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Farmers frustrated with equipment manufacturer

Yorkton-based equipment manufacturer Leon’s Manufacturing has been the subject of multiple complaints about its sales and delivery practices over the past five years.

The company’s name quickly pops up in posts by disgruntled customers in an online search with the Better Business Bureau website and farmers’ forums.

Yet Leon’s continues to attract more unsatisfied customers, including Daysland, Alta., farmer Mike Terway, who says he wishes he’d done an online search before ordering a land scraper from the company last year.

Terway, one of seven farmers and dealers who have complained to the Alberta Farmers’ Advocate office, thought that buying direct from Leon’s would be cheaper than going through a dealer and, besides, the dealers he phoned didn’t have any stock.

Under Alberta legislation, the farmers’ advocate can assist farmers who purchased through a dealership if problems arise with delivery. They are entitled to get their deposit back while the dealership deals with the manufacturer.

Leon’s is registered as a dealer in Alberta and Saskatchewan. Buying direct, however, is always a buyer-beware proposition, a spokesperson for the advocate office said.

Terway ordered an eight-yard scraper directly from the company sales representative in May 2022.

“He said if you pay for it, it will be ready in four weeks and we’ll deliver it right to your yard,” the Alberta farmer said in an interview. “He gave me the price and it was quite a bit cheaper. We put $23,000 down and he actually had a guy come and get the cheque in our yard.”

A week later, the Terways decided they wanted a larger scraper, so they phoned and changed their order, agreeing to pay an additional $8,000 on delivery.

Four weeks went by with no sign of the scraper. When Terway phoned, the person he had dealt with was no longer there, but he was assured it would be delivered in two weeks.

“It was always two weeks,” said Terway. “This was back in May of 2022. I waited a whole year.”

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The Investment Opportunities of Industrial Hemp

Video: The Investment Opportunities of Industrial Hemp

The fledgling U.S. hemp industry is decades behind countries like Canada, France and China, but according to impact investor and this week’s podcast guest, Pierre Berard, it could flourish into a $2.2 billion industry by 2030 and create thousands of jobs.

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He spent many years developing investment in the agriculture infrastructure of developing countries in Latin America and Africa, and said the hemp industry feels similar.

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On this week’s hemp podcast, Berard talks about the report and the opportunities available to investors in the feed, fiber and food sectors of the hemp industry.

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Read the report here: Seeing the U.S. Industrial Hemp Opportunity

Also on this episode, we check in with hemp and bison farmer Herb Grove from Brush Mountain Bison in Centre County, PA, where he grew 50 acres of hemp grain. We’ll hear about harvest and dry down and crushing the seed for oil and cake.