Ad Spot

Albert Lea farm equipment store abruptly closes

Rueter’s Equipment in Albert Lea closed Monday.

The farm equipment store and New Holland dealership was at 77847 209th St. in southeast Albert Lea.

District 2 Commissioner Dan Belshan said Tuesday the closing would result in the loss of 10 jobs.

“Titan Machinery intended to close this location in 2016,” Rueter’s said in a statement. “We purchased the location with the hopes of continuing. While significant improvements were made, it was not enough to turn it into a sustainable business. We wish the best to the Albert Lea community.”

Rueter’s corporate website described the company as offering sales, service, parts and rentals on Case, New Holland, Kubota, Bobcat, JCB, Hyundai, Kinze, Salford, McCormick and other brands.

Karl’s Carquest Auto Parts owner Chuck Karl, whose store sold connectors, tapes, chemicals and tools to Rueter’s, said the store’s closing is bad news for Albert Lea.

“It’s a huge loss to the community,” he said. “It’s the last of our implements here in town.”

Farm implement dealerships in Freeborn County include John Deere dealership Kibble Equipment in Hollandale and Case dealer Arnold’s in Alden.

Karl said though he doesn’t know whether Rueter’s could have remained open in Albert Lea, he took issue with the way it closed. He noted he has been informed that store employees were notified of the store’s closing the day it closed.

“It’s just a harsh, harsh closing,” he said.

Ryan Hajek, who farms with his father north of Myrtle, said he has bought machinery parts at the dealership.

“It’s just kind of a bummer that there are no implements in Albert Lea,” he said.

About Sam Wilmes

Sam Wilmes covers crime, courts and government for the Albert Lea Tribune.

email author More by Sam