Tuesday, January 10, 2023

Article: Deere gives farmers long-sought ability to repair their own tractors

Good news - John Deere has bowed to pressure and will let farmers repair John Deere equipment themselves.

US farmers will have the right to repair tractors and other agricultural equipment from John Deere without having to use the manufacturer’s own parts and facilities, under an agreement the company signed Sunday with farm industry representatives. 

Yes, this is good news for farmers because they need to be able to repair their equipment quickly, especially during the growing season or their crops will be lost.

Bad news?

First, this is for farmers and not for other folks who might own John Deere equipment. (I owned a John Deere garden tractor many years ago and this would not have covered me.)

Second, this MOU is not permanent and can be retracted.

Third, in it the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) "agrees to encourage state Farm Bureau organizations to recognize the commitments made in this MOU and refrain from introducing, promoting, or supporting federal or state "Right to Repair" legislation that imposes obligations beyond the commitments in this MOU. In the event any state or federal legislation or regulation relating to issues covered by this MOU and/or "Right to Repair" is enacted, each of AFBF and Manufacturer reserve the right, upon fifteen (15) days written notice, to withdraw from this MOU." So this agreement turns Farm Bureau organizations into advocates against the right to repair.

It will be interesting to see how this agreement impacts non-farmers and the right to repair movement. Let's hope that the right to repair movement ignores any pressure this MOU might create on it.


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