Sweet new Case IH role puts spotlight on sugar industry
14 Jun 2018
“Sugar has always been a part of my life – I know no different. I always knew I’d follow my family into the industry and I’m proud to be part of it.”
Lawrence Polga has been around the sugar industry his whole life and knows his new role with global agricultural machinery brand Case IH will make a difference to producers across the sector.
His family’s involvement with the sugar industry goes back several generations, and when it came time for Lawrence to map out a career path, he didn’t have to look far.
Lawrence has worked with Case IH for the past six years as the Aftersales Business Manager for North Queensland, and has now accepted a new role with the company, one that will keep him in close contact with dealers and customers in the sugarcane areas of Australia.
As the Product Manager for Sugarcane Harvesters, Lawrence sees the job as “looking after sugar from start to finish”. He’ll work closely with dealers and Case IH colleagues in the region, assisting with sales requirements and support, while maintaining his existing Aftersales role for cane harvesters and tractors. Lawrence will continue to work alongside service staff, ensuring the highest standards are met and maintained.
Case IH customers will be the big winners from his new role, Lawrence says, with the newly-created position reflecting the importance Case IH places on the sugar industry in North Queensland and Northern NSW.
“In terms of sugar, Case IH is putting in a lot of investment to continue to grow this area, and offer the support needed by our farmers,” Lawrence says.
Born and bred in the Burdekin, Lawrence began his career at AgNorth in Ayr, where he spent 10 years as a technician, before transitioning to sales.
His father and an uncle had a cane haulage business for many years, before they returned to AgNorth to run the workshop. Lawrence worked under both of them at various times during his years at the dealership.
“It was interesting,” he laughs, when asked what it was like working so closely with family members, but he also credits them for the way he carries out his job today.
“They taught me the key parts to the sugar industry, and my father taught me about customer relations and how important it is to look after your customers.”
Lawrence says sugar producers are proud of producing a premium product, and in return expect a superior level of service and reliability in the machinery they use.
“And they’re very innovative. They think outside the box so you’ve got to embrace that. My Dad has always said, ‘No idea is a bad idea, you just have to sift through and see whether you can make it work’.”
“We’re listening to customers and our products are reflecting that. Case IH is committed to not only maintaining this close relationship with customers, but through my new role, building on and strengthening it”
Lawrence says ideas and innovations developed by Australian canegrowers have been added to Case IH’s sugarcane harvester, the Austoft, over the years with a new series becoming available to the local market earlier this year.
The Austoft® 8010 Series is a major update to the harvester product offering, with 28 new features and improvements that came out of more than 18,000 hours of field-testing.
The likes of cab-lifting is an example of feedback from the Australian market that has been incorporated into the Austoft series, Lawrence says.
“We’re listening to customers and our products are reflecting that. Case IH is committed to not only maintaining this close relationship with customers, but through my new role, building on and strengthening it,” he says.
“I’m excited about the role because of the opportunities I see, and our customers can be confident that the staff on the ground are as passionate about the sugar industry as they are.”
To find out more about the Austoft, see your local Case IH dealer or visit the Case IH website at www.caseih.com.
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