Offering an extensive agricultural contracting service throughout an area spreading from Cardiff to Tewkesbury, M G Ricketts has been in the business for almost 25 years and is renowned for quality of service. They specialise in all types of agricultural services including ploughing, drilling, muck and slurry spreading (umbilical), forestry management and forage harvesting - grass, whole crop and maize.
Business owner Mark Ricketts commented, “We like to keep our kit up-to-date with the latest tech and specifications because our reputation for reliability is what sells us. We run all John Deere tractors including two 6195Rs, a 6155R and a 6150R. This year, we have updated our self-propelled forage harvester from a Claas 970 to the very latest John Deere 9700i and it’s proven to be a very positive step forward.”
The John Deere 9700i self-propelled forage harvester is powered by a massive V12, 24.2 litre, 759 horsepower engine really delivers productivity in the field. Highcapacity, ProStream crop flow system and proven kernel processor, maximise the horsepower by providing smooth and efficient material flow throughout the machine in all crops be it grass, whole-crop or maize silage. “There were two things that made me change up to the John Deere,” commented Mark, “firstly, the engine is absolutely amazing and doesn’t die - just keeps on powering through. It’s one of the best engines I have ever experienced. Secondly, the back-up service from Tallis Amos Group is phenomenal. When you are running a very busy contracting business like ours, you cannot afford to have anything but the best back-up. We’ve been dealing with Simon Amos at TAG since we started and they have always given us excellent after-sales back-up, it’s second to none.”
John Deere 9000 Series forage harvesters are well known for offering very consistent length of cut, something which discerning customers, looking to make the highest quality silage are always looking for. “Not only are we getting consistent length of chop, regardless of crop - which can help make the highest quality silage, but we also have the highest level of accuracy in the field as we are using John Deere’s StarFire 6000 receiver integrated with AutoTrac giving a powerful precision farming solution. We are planning to add the HarvestLab facility in the near future, so we can provide our customers with real-time read-outs of crop yield and crop quality.”
Typically, Mark and his team, with the John Deere 9700i are harvesting between 70 - 100 acres a day – depending on crop and field conditions. “Fuel consumption has been exceptional,” added Mark, “likewise reliability. This means we have greater uptime, greater field performance and reduced fuel costs, all of which are a benefit to both ourselves and our customers. With TAG’s exceptional back-up, we rarely lose time for servicing stops and if we do have a hold-up, TAG’s service guys are there at a drop of a hat. I couldn’t ask for a better combination. It’s just a perfect set-up for me.”