The AF Group – the nationwide agricultural buying group and independent provider of advice, insight, and services to the farming community – has announced its largest ever spring crop protection rebate, delivering £800,000 to eligible members.
This news comes just months after AF announced at the end of its last financial year that it was returning £1.6m in value back to its members, including its first ever discretional general rebate of £300,000, highlighting its increased strength and continued success.
“Over the last couple of years, we have invested in our business and focused on efforts that will directly benefit our members,” said Lindy Blanchard, Head of Crop Production at AF. “As a result, we’re delighted to offer this spring crop protection rebate. Our strategy has laid the foundation for stronger supplier relationships which is delivering more value back to our members.”
“We will continue to negotiate the best terms and plan supply in order to help members manage one of their highest variable costs. This level of support enables businesses to plan with confidence and our rebate is another example of our integrated approach working for members and suppliers alike.”
The AF Group sources more than £275m of goods every year for more than 3,500 shareholder members. The spring crop protection rebate is the latest in a line of regular contractual rebates, offered on products and services including fertilisers, machinery, and mobile contracts.
AF Group CEO, Jon Duffy, has welcomed the news and highlighted the importance of farming businesses taking every opportunity to strengthen their position during the uncertainties facing the industry.
“Making sensible decisions is key,” said Mr Duffy. “We’ve worked with thousands of members to understand their business models and identify where we can offer more value. Brexit continues to cause uncertainty but there are aspects of your business that can be controlled.”
“By making sure you can capitalise on any opportunities that arise and taking full advantage of the support and partnerships open to you, it’s possible to establish a robust position and our rebate highlights that approach.”
Despite the unpredictable times facing the industry, AF are firm in their commitment to UK farmers, and confident in their course of action.
“In 2019, we have already created a great deal of value in the supply-chain and transferred that back to our members,” added Mr Duffy. “As the year has passed, we’ve grown AF to its strongest point yet. For our members, this means they can continue to expect exceptional support and value for their business and I look forward to more of the same in 2020.”