A Northern Territory watermelon grower is reaping the rewards of investing in a new Toyota forklift at his property near Katherine.
Dawsons Melons proprietor Brett Dawson was making do with an old forklift from another brand when he visited the Toyota Material Handling Australia (TMHA) branch in Darwin to enquire about purchasing a second-hand forklift.
"At first I wasn't sure which brand to look at, but the Toyota forklifts were recommended to me by one of the local transport operators here," Mr Dawson said.
"Toyota has a good reputation for reliability.
"I was thinking of a second-hand forklift, but after having a look around and discussing my needs with the sales staff I realised a new forklift was the right option for me," Mr Dawson said.
"I like to keep all of my equipment for a long time rather than trading it in every few years, so I'm happy to invest in a quality Toyota forklift that will give me years of reliable service."
Mr Dawson now has a Toyota 8FD25 2.5-tonne diesel counterbalance forklift and hand pallet truck on duty at his farm in Venn, just outside Katherine. The Toyota forklift is used primarily to lift his produce on and off pallet scales and for side-loading of flat-bed trucks.
"It's fairly simple to use and operate. It does the job quickly and without any fuss," he said.
Given his location in a relatively remote area (approximately 300 kilometres south of Darwin) the after-sales side of the purchase decision was an important consideration.
"Having confidence in the back-up and service support of a company like Toyota is a big plus. You might find a forklift from another brand for a lower price up front, but what do you do when things go wrong? You could be left high and dry with no support, and out here that's a big problem," Mr Dawson said.
TMHA Darwin branch manager Brendan Shegog said this is a common reason for businesses in the region to put their trust in Toyota equipment.
"We sell quite a bit of Toyota forklift equipment to business in the area and even though it's a long drive from Darwin our technicians are down there every couple of weeks, so there's no problem scheduling everyone in for regular servicing and support," Mr Shegog said.
Dawson's Melons was established in 1989 in Victoria before moving to its present location near Katherine in 2002 and provides wholesale seedless watermelons for all the major Australian markets.
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