Capital press. (Salem, OR) 19??-current, January 19, 2018, Page 3, Image 3

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    January 19, 2018
Hemorrhaging stanched in farm machinery market
heartened to see
‘replacement cycle’
Capital Press
The hemorrhaging down-
turn in U.S. large farm ma-
chinery sales appears to
have been stanched in 2017
despite continued weakness
in agricultural incomes.
In 2017, manufacturers
sold roughly half the num-
ber of self-propelled com-
tractors and two-wheel-
drive tractors over 100
horsepower as they did five
years earlier.
For the year, though,
unit sales of combines and
four-wheel drive tractors
ticked up 3.6 percent and
5 percent, respectively —
a huge improvement over
2016, when the market
for large farm machinery
was still in a double-digit
Unit sales for two-
wheel-drive tractors over
100 horsepower decreased
8 percent in 2017, com-
pared to a drop of more
than 22 percent the prior
“We started seeing the
slowing of the decline,”
said Curt Blades, senior
vice president of agricul-
tural services for the Asso-
ciation of Equipment Man-
ufacturers, which compiles
machinery sales data.
It appears the farm ma-
chinery industry entered a
“replacement cycle” in the
final half of 2017, boosting
U.S. ag machinery sales in 2017
40 thousand units
2WD tractors (100 HP or greater)
4WD tractors
Down 8.1%
from 2016
Source: Association of Equipment
4,112: Up 3.6% from 2016
2,427: Up 4.9% from 2016
10 7,116
Mateusz Perkowski and Alan Kenaga/Capital Press
sales even as growers re-
main unenthusiastic about
crop prices, he said.
Manufacturers can’t ex-
pect sales to return to the
“exuberance” earlier in
the decade, but the current
market is more predictable,
Blades said.
“The good news about a
replacement cycle, those are
sustainable,” he said.
spurred farm machinery
demand between 2007 and
2013, when unit sales in-
creased about 88 percent for
four-wheel-drive tractors,
78 percent for two-wheel-
drive tractors over 100
horsepower and 50 percent
for combines.
Economists aren’t fore-
casting a major upswing in
commodity crop prices, but
they’re likely to at least re-
main stable in 2018, allow-
ing the “replacement cycle”
to keep its forward momen-
tum, Blades said.
ture-friendly provisions in
the tax reform bill enacted
late last year will probably
“shake some sales loose” in
the future, he said.
The amount of used ma-
chinery on the market is
not so abundant as to sig-
nificantly cannibalize sales
of new equipment, he said.
“The excess inventory is
beginning to work its way
through the system.
Manufacturers are also
heartened by the healthy
demand for small farm ma-
chinery, which is general-
ly tied to the overall U.S.
economy, Blades said.
Two-wheel-drive tractors
under 40 horsepower have
seen unit sales climb 8 per-
cent in 2017 over the prior
year, while sales have been
flat for those between 40
horsepower and 100 horse-
Wolves confirmed in Mount Hood National Forest
Pair spotted on trail
cameras, may lead
to new pack
Capital Press
After years of whispers
and reported sightings, wild-
life officials have confirmed
at least two wolves caught
on trail cameras earlier this
month roaming the Mount
Hood National Forest in
Oregon’s northern Cascade
It is the first time mul-
tiple wolves were detected
in the area since the species
returned to Oregon in the
late 1990s. Conservationists
cheered the news Wednes-
day, while local ranchers an-
ticipated further conflict with
their livestock.
Because they are located
west of highways 395, 78
and 95, management of the
wolves falls to the U.S. Fish
Courtesy Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife
Trail camera images taken Jan. 4 show two wolves in the northern portion of Oregon’s Cascade Moun-
tains in the Mount Hood National Forest.
and Wildlife Service. Wolves
remain a federally listed en-
dangered species in Western
John Stephenson, wildlife
biologist and Oregon wolf
coordinator for the USFWS,
said the presence of wolves
near Mount Hood comes as
no surprise. For years, Ste-
phenson said there have been
frequent wolf sightings and
documentation of dispersers
from other packs in northeast
“Now there’s two, and
they’ve been there for a
while now,” Stephenson said.
“We’ll probably attempt to
get a collar on one of them at
some point and collect scat so
we can figure out where they
came from.”
Josh Laughlin, executive
director of the Eugene-based
environmental group Casca-
dia Wildlands, said it is heart-
ening to see gray wolves con-
tinuing to reoccupy historic
territories across the North-
west after they were nearly
“It also underscores the
need to maintain safeguards
for this unique species that
continues to be under fire by
special interest groups and
politicians,” Laughlin said.
“It is imperative that pro-
tections are upheld for the
gray wolf as it continues its
remarkable recovery in the
Jerome Rosa, executive
director of the Oregon Cat-
tlemen’s Association, said
the group is very concerned
about the establishment of
wolves on the west side of
“We’re just beginning to
see the conflicts that are go-
ing to be happening,” Rosa
said. “These wolves are
apex predators. I think a lot
of folks, particularly on the
west side who make policy
on wildlife issues, don’t real-
ize how aggressive and how
deadly these wolves are.”
Most recently, the Rogue
pack in southwest Oregon
was responsible for preying
on cattle three times in eight
days at the same ranch in
south of Prospect. Rosa said
the problems between wolves
and livestock will only con-
tinue to escalate.
Keith Nantz, a cattle
rancher near Maupin, said
Wasco County established
a wolf compensation com-
mittee several years ago in
anticipation for when the
predators arrived. With the
species listed as federally en-
dangered, he said that leaves
producers with few options
other than non-lethal deter-
rents to protect their herds.
“I’m pretty upset about
not having the control to pro-
tect our livelihood and our
private property,” he said.
In the meantime, Rosa
urged ranchers to make sure
they report any suspected
livestock predation to state
and wildlife authorities.
“We know that it’s dif-
ficult for them, but we need
them to notify when there is a
predation that occurs,” Rosa
said. “Some of them are frus-
trated enough that they don’t
want to take the time and the
effort to do it ... But we need
to have those continued dep-
redations reported so that we
can be able to help them.”
University adds agribusiness
SALEM — Corban Uni-
versity, a private Christian
college on the outskirts of
Salem, Ore., is poised to add
classes in agribusiness next
fall, which school officials
hope will plant the seed for a
full agricultural sciences de-
gree in the future.
University President Shel-
don Nord planned to make the
official announcement Friday
evening during the SAIF Agri-
business Banquet at the Salem
Convention Center.
“We’re very excited about
the agribusiness concentra-
tion,” Nord said. “Not only
will it allow us to make the best
possible use of our resources
— not the least of which is our
location in the Willamette Val-
ley — but it’s going to equip
our students to meet the needs
of the marketplace.”
Agribusiness will be of-
fered as a concentration
under the Hoff School of
Business. Griff Lindell, the
business school dean, said
they are looking for 15 stu-
dents to launch the program
in August.
“This concentration is go-
ing to be an exceptional com-
plement to the business con-
centrations we already offer,”
Lindell said. “It’s an exciting
time for the agriculture indus-
try, and an exciting time for
Corban University is now
the only private Christian col-
lege with an agricultural pro-
gram west of the Rockies.
The Hoff School of Busi-
ness already provides con-
centrations in accounting,
marketing, leadership and
management and sports and
recreation business. Agri-
business will become the fifth
concentration at the school,
and though the curriculum is
still being finalized, Lindell
said it will include courses
in agricultural marketing,
commodity markets and food
The concentration will also
require six credits of intern-
ship at companies along the
agricultural value chain, from
farms and ranches to food pro-
cessing and technology.
Lindell said there is a grow-
ing need for qualified gradu-
ates in agriculture. He cited
statistics that, by 2020, compa-
nies will need to fill a projected
57,000 agricultural jobs, with
46 percent of those in manage-
ment and business.
“So it makes sense to have
a new concentration where we
provide the workplace with
15, 20, 30 students a year in
the agriculture value chain,”
he said.
The ultimate goal, Lindell
said, is for Corban to introduce
its own college of agricultur-
al studies, with full majors in
agribusiness, agricultural sci-
ence and agricultural missions
— a combination of science,
entrepreneurship and inter-cul-
tural communications to help
feed the world.
The university completed
a feasibility report on building
the new school in 2016, and re-
cently purchased 78 acres con-
tiguous to its campus. But first,
Lindell said they are focused
on the agribusiness concentra-
tion, which if successful, could
develop into its own major and
lead to a full college likely
sometime after 2022.
“That’s still the goal,” Lin-
dell said. “The first step to-
ward that is to do a concentra-
tion within the Hoff School of
Capital Press
Weekly fieldwork report
• Snow water equivalent*
• Percent area in drought
• Avg. temperature, 6-10 day outlook
• Precipitation, 6-10 day outlook
Above (north)/
below (south)
(Percent chance deviation from normal)
(Percent chance deviation from normal)
• Soil moisture anomaly
(Monthly deviation from normal)
*Aggregate average percent of median as of Jan. 16. Medians calculated for the period from 1981-2010.
Sources: USDA, NRCS; NOAA,;