A combination of a strong harvest and higher commodity prices has led farmers to change up machinery as revenues increased throughout the year according to a new report from Cheffins which conducts one of the largest monthly second-hand tractors and agricultural machinery sales in the world.

For it's last monthly event, the company which operates throughout its Cambridge Machinery sales site near Ely, but also at on-farm auctions, reported sales of more than £11.3m for the third quarter.

While stock fell 11% across the quarter, the September 2018 auction was the highest grossing September sale at the site since 2014, making a total of £3.5m.

According to Cheffins, prices are continually buoyed by the strength of overseas buyers making the most of favourable exchange rates and the lack of stock available.

Most sales witness around 80% of stock destined for overseas, with buyers from around 30 different countries competing for the best kit. The third quarter saw buyers from Southern Ireland, Spain and Poland being the most active taking in the region of £3m.

Domestic buyers have also returned to the market as a result of increased revenues, with circa £2m-worth of stock being sold at the Cambridge Machinery Sales to UK-based purchasers.

Bill Pepper, director of the sales said: "A strong harvest and higher commodity prices have led to value increases for the best quality second-hand agricultural machinery and plant equipment. Stock levels decreased throughout Q3, however this was to be expected as farmers’ time is taken up by harvest and the hay-making period.

"The gross figure for the September 2018 sale is illustrative of the demand for second-hand kit which we have seen this year as farmers and dealers return to the market.

"Buyers from Europe are continuing to dominate sales, with a Spanish dealer being the biggest individual buyer, whilst purchasers from Poland are coming into their own as its burgeoning agricultural sector sees demand for second-hand machinery.

Additional reassurance for farmers in the release of the Agriculture Bill has also led to an increase in UK-based purchasers and we expect the last quarter of the year to see high levels of demand for the best second-hand opportunities.”

On-farm sales have continued to thrive with Cheffins hosting auctions across the UK. Individual on-farm sales saw more than £1.867m-worth of sales on behalf of farmers throughout Q3.

Over the past three months, more than 1115 lots have been offered with the top seller during the quarter being a Claas Lexion 630 combine harvester which sold for £88,000.