Despite the global pandemic, European machinery manufacturer Amazone remains confident the agricultural machinery sector will strengthen in 2020.
Speaking off the back of its 2019 financial report announcement, Amazone joint managing directors Christian Dreyer and Dr Justus Dreyer said despite the challenges posed over the last year, the company could declare a strong financial result.
The Dreyers said sales had declined by 2.9 per cent in 2019 to $775 million, mainly due to a dry European summer, trade conflicts and infrastructure issues, but they expected strong results in 2020 despite the current pandemic.
"Even under the current extremely difficult operating conditions, and through the great commitment from the entire Amazone team, we have managed to keep sales for the first quarter of 2020 at a high level," they said.
"On top of the compliance with infection protection and undertaking the recommended measures, the maintenance of production, deliveries and service remain our main goals.
"Our machines are urgently needed by farmers and contractors for the production of food and thus for our food security - not just now, but also in the future.
"Deliveries of Amazone agricultural machinery are at a high level and there is a pleasingly good order book.
"However, negative effects triggered by the coronavirus pandemic or other extreme weather events cannot be ruled out during the remainder of 2020."
The Dreyers said Amazone had invested more than seven per cent of its turnover in research and development during 2019, focusing on addressing agronomic problems affecting farm profit.
"Our range of machinery for reduced tillage, mulch sowing and direct sowing, as well as the Schmotzer mechanical weeding equipment, underline this," they said.
"Extremely precise fertiliser spreaders offering need-based, part-area, site-specific fertilisation and the new digital solutions for integrated plant protection, such as the electric single nozzle control, are also important solutions for saving resources and protecting the environment.
"Amazone has been offering farmers for many years machinery which has been optimised for use in accordance our '3C' cost-cutting concept across the world.
"Innovative equipment, adapted to both soil and climate, will be the driving force behind our sales in the forthcoming years."
The Dreyers said winning three innovation awards at Agritechnica for the company's new technology was a particular highlight of 2019.
Amazone machinery is distributed in Australia through the Claas Harvest Centre network and selected independent dealerships.