Claas has announced plans to invest around €40 million ($40.7 million) over the next few years to expand and modernize a production facility in Bad Saulgau, Germany. This investment will improve the company’s overall production capacities to meet the increasing demand for the hay tools and forage harvester heads currently being produced at that plant.
Bad Saulgau is the Claas Group's "Center of Excellence" for the forage harvesting process chain; producing disc mowers, rakes, tedders and heads for the industry-leading Jaguar forage harvester. The facility has expanded considerably over recent years and continued to increase its turnover even through the Covid-19 pandemic. As part of an ongoing investment program, the site's infrastructure is currently being expanded and upgraded, while an existing 16,000 square foot building is being redesigned to create additional assembly space.
In addition, the entire energy infrastructure is being adapted and upgraded over several stages to meet future production capacity. This will be followed by investments in production logistics and assembly optimization.
“In North America, Claas has led the forage harvesting market, continuing to deliver high-performance machines that deliver outstanding forage quality,” says Eric Raby, Claas Senior Vice President, Americas. “This expansion will allow us to continue providing farmers with equipment that meets their harvesting needs.”
Focus on Growth Segments
The success of Claas forage harvesting equipment and, most importantly, the positive sales forecasts for the new ORBIS header line, spurred the changes in the Bad Saulgau plant.
"We continue to observe an unbroken trend toward professional harvesting technology and enjoy an excellent positioning here with many product lines," explained Uli Nickol, Head of the Claas Forage Harvesting Division and Managing Director at Claas Saulgau GmbH and Claas Material Handling GmbH. "An example of this is the enormous demand for our new ORBIS row-crop headers, especially the new ORBIS 900, which has significantly exceeded our expectations. In addition to technology for the harvesting chain based around the forage harvester, Claas will also be expanding, modernizing, and professionalizing its range of mowers, tedders, rakes, and balers with many new products over the next few years. New innovations are currently being developed and tested to achieve this."
Claas will further consolidate its position as the world market leader when it comes to forage harvesters and one of the world's leading manufacturers and suppliers of mowers, tedders, rakes and balers. Just recently, a brand-new generation of LINER 4-rotor rakes with a patented cardanic system and unique frame design was introduced. It was met with enormous interest from farmers and contractors worldwide. Another new, ground-breaking achievement in the mower segment is the unique DISCO 4400 vector folding system, which was also recently unveiled.
"Claas has once again shown itself to be the leading pace-setter in professional forage harvesting," Nickol adds. "The investments in the Bad Saulgau site aim to ensure that our expectations for growth are supported by high-performance production at the highest level of quality. Furthermore, new requirements in terms of documentation and the high-impact harvesting of renewable raw materials for energy production are resulting in an increasing demand for harvesting chains featuring yield and content detection via NIRS technology, something we are ideally suited to meet with the JAGUAR forage harvester."