Schaffer's renowned work ethic has put the economy into ecology at an eco farm in Germany.

Located 100km south of Berlin, this 4,000 hectare farm is in the middle of a nature reserve called "Spreewald" in Radensdorf and has been registered as an ecological farm since 2001.

The farm has a range of Schaffer front end loaders - five in all - from the recent telescopic articulated loader 930T to one of the oldest, a 442S. The front end loaders are used for cleaning up around the farm, feeding the livestock, bedding the straw and a wide variety of other jobs.

Hans Lehman, a senior farm manager, says: "Our first Schaffer front end loader, the 442S, was delivered in 1995 and since then it has been used daily, performing 21,000 hours of work for us - problem-free.

"In 1996 we bought a telescopic articulated loader 870T which has done more than 19,500 hours for us and which is also used every day. Every Schaffer that we own has been low maintenance and reliable."

Hans attributes the remarkable working record of the Schaffer front end loader fleet to the sturdy industrial quality of everything that comes out of the Schaffer factory in Germany.

"These impressively high working hours are proof of the outstanding reliability of all Schaffer loaders," Hans says.

"The Kubota engines run well and are very economical, and the lifting and pulling power of the compact machines is tremendous."

Versatility is another key feature of the Schaffer loaders according to Hans. "You can use a wide range of accessories and attachments, which means there are few tasks a Schaffer cannot cope with."

The farm has been very successful in recent years, especially its dairy business, which has greatly expanded.

The number of Schaffer front end loaders on the farm has increased to keep pace with the growing dairy herd and other work on site.

The farm has more than 600 dairy cows, grows feed for the herd and yields more than 7,000 litres of milk per year per cow. All practices are bionomic, which means no chemical weed killers, pesticides or fertilisers.

When commenting on the farm's success, Hans is quick to credit his long working partnership with Schaffer. Over more than a decade he has had time to see Schaffer front end loaders in action after the showroom gloss wears off, 365 days a year.

In short, he gives them the thumbs up. "Maintenance is very easy with a Schaffer," he says. "After using them for more than 12 years we know the Schaffer loaders very well - and we know they pay off in lower costs."