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Ag tiremakers, dealers struggle with pricing

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Pricing is one of the many challenges facing farm tire manufacturers and dealers as 2010 winds down.

"The industry looks like it will again be impacted by volatile raw material costs similar to 2008," says Tom Rodgers, director of marketing, Agrucltural Tire, U.S. & Canada Commercial Tire Sales Division, Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations LLC.

Neil Rayson, president of CGS Tires U.S. Inc., also cites raw material costs as a pressing concern for tire manufacturers. Inventory is another issue -- and not just for suppliers.

"For the dealer, if the short term trend continues, his dilemma will be how much inventory to commit to -- and when -- to try to secure sufficient spring supply and mitigate the impending price increases."

Moving forward, farm tire manufacturers will have to balance the need for plant investment against escalating raw material costs, says Bill Haney, sales director for Balkrishna Industries.

"Much of the manufacturing infrastructure needs replaced or updated at a time when high raw material costs are competing for available capital. Dealers face a similar challenge in stocking tires now vs. higher prices later."

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