2Bits: Tips for Selling Wholesale–ELD impacts everyone
With a 11.7% reduction in motor carrier crash rates, the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate is not going away.
The ELD Mandate went into full effect on December 18, 2017. It will impact everyone directly or indirectly.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issued a mandate that will impact transportation in a major way. This mandate intended to create safer highways by making it easier and faster for commercial drivers to more accurately track, manage and share driving records.
Every farmer that delivers produce or product to a farmers’ market, restaurant, or grocery store needs to know why or why not they’re governed by this mandate.
Every parent that hauls a show steer, ewe, or 4H barrel racing horse to a rodeo needs to know why or why not they’re governed by this mandate.
The EDL Mandate applies to most motor carrier and other drivers who are currently required to maintain records of duty status (RODS). The EDL Mandate applies to commercial buses, as well as trucks.
There are several exemptions, including:
- Drivers who use paper logs no more than 8 days during any 30-day period.
- Driveaway-towaway drivers
- Drivers of vehicles manufactured before the model year 2000
Think you’re exempt?
If you feel you fall under any of these exemptions, it may still be a smart decision to keep a paper log. Keep in mind you are very visible when delivering and hauling in trucks that are newer than a model year 2000, with farm names printed on them. The Department of Transportation and a law enforcement officer may stop you to do a routine check. A conversation about the ELD Mandate with your family or business attorney could save you time, money, and inconvenience later.
Decide you should comply?
If you determine you must be compliant, be sure to research the ELD devices available thoroughly including the cellular vs. blue-tooth reporting options. A quick Google search yields options that range in cost from $180 – $800 per unit, which is a cost that is most likely less than paying for a violation found during a routine vehicle stop.
Direct impact from the ELD Mandate may not be your driving or hauling. Instead, you may be impacted by supplies you order or product you ship.
In a recent Cattlemen’s Advocate column written by Trent Loos, a farmer, writer, radio host, and founder of Faces of Agriculture, Loos references the current challenge bee owners in the U.S. have. It is hard for them to find truckers willing to ship bees out to meet their spring pollination contracts.
Selling wholesale and delivering your products?
If you’re large enough to sell your produce wholesale, determine how this mandate will impact your delivery or shipping costs. Wholesale farmers have tight margins. So the ability to plan ahead for time delays and increased cost is vital for profitability.
Grace period given for livestock haulers.
Livestock haulers have been granted a 90-day grace period. What’s the best use of your time during this grace period? Wait and hope the ELD Mandate is adjusted to better meet current livestock handling practices? Or, review these practices, adjust for compliance, and if necessary, adjust the price of your services or products accordingly. You decide!
How 2BuyAg can help:
2BuyAg can’t help you with the ELD Mandate. However, we can help you streamline your marketing and sales processes so you have time to stay current on government requirements. Sign onto 2BuyAg today. Create your account. Invite your customers to join also. Save time for everyone!