Supply chain issues, equipment shortages and shipping obstacles are impacting business owners and farmers everywhere. As harvest in the U.S. heartland approaches 50% complete, parts dealers and manufacturers are recommending farmers to order ahead for spring planting, fearing parts may just be inaccessible by then. For some, that’s already the case. Access to steel, plastic, rubber, and other raw materials has been difficult throughout the pandemic. A Buckingham, Iowa farmer reported locking his machine shed each night for fear of thieves stealing hard-to-find parts. Other farmers have reported telling harvest crews to no longer drive on roadsides to avoid the possibility of shredding a tire. It’s a difficult season weighing heavily on equipment manufacturers, who are faced with a painful choice this harvest season: send parts to factories to build new to sell to farmers, or redirect those parts to existing customers in need out in the field? Read more on parts shortages as harvest continues.