Modern-day farming involves using a huge range of equipment for various activities. It is no longer done on small scale, but is done using huge machines over thousands of hectares. Agricultural machinery is the machinery used for conducting firework. There are different equipment starting from hand and power tools to tractors and other farm implements that aid in farming practices. Both organic and inorganic farming involves using an array of equipment. Agricultural machinery helps enhance the production practices that the farmers employ. It used hybrid seeds of different varieties of a single crop along with technologically advanced equipment and a lot of energy subsidies in the form of irrigation water, fertilisers, and pesticides.
“The global agricultural equipment market size was valued at USD 157.89 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow from USD 168.30 billion in 2022 to USD 272.36 billion by 2029, exhibiting a CAGR of 7.1% during the forecast period.”
For a farmer to be highly productive, it is essential to plant, reap, and sow at the right time using the right equipment and in the right season. Farming practices use different farm implements which are used in different steps in farming operations. To increase the value of any farm produce, a farmer needs to maintain a stable schedule and pick the right equipment.
Different farming operations use different types of machinery. Crop production includes handling residues from previous crops, primary and secondary tillage of the soil, distribution and application of fertilisers, seeding, planting, transplanting, cultivation, pest control, harvesting, transportation, storage, and more. At the same time, livestock production includes multiple complex and highly sophisticated machines to handle water, feed, bedding, manure, and other special operations involved in producing milk and eggs.
In this blog, we have discussed the different types and benefits of farm machinery and equipment.
Types of Agricultural Machinery
- Tractor: Available in different sizes, these versatile pieces are a must-have type of farm equipment. Ensure that you pick the one that comes with the right amount of horsepower and the perfect hitch rating. Farmers also use a two-wheeled tractor, along with a range of attachments such as a hay baler, a rototiller, a seeder, a wagon, a bed shaper, etc.
- Combined Harvester: This versatile machine is designed to harvest different types of grain crops. The name combine harvester is derived from combining different harvesting operations like reaping, threshing, and winnowing into a single process. Crops such as wheat, oats, rye, barley, corn, sorghum, soybeans, flax, sunflowers, and canola are harvested with a combine. The separated straw that is left lying on the field comprises the stems and other remaining leaves of the crops with limited nutrients. These straws are chopped, spread on the field and ploughed back in or used as feed for livestock.
- Plough: Ploughs are used for the initial cultivation of the soil and preparing it for sowing seed and planting. Ploughing is used to flip the upper layer of the soil, which helps in bringing fresh nutrients to the surface. At the same time, the remains of the previous crops are allowed to break down. Nowadays, the ploughing field is left to dry out and then harrowed before starting the plantation process.
- Harrows: Used primarily for cultivating the surface of the soil, harrows are used to carry out deeper cultivation. It provides a finer finish for a good soil structure that is suitable for seeding and planting operations.
- Mowers: This machine is used to cut grass and other plants that grow on the ground. Usually, mowing and reaping are different processes that use similar implements, but these are the traditional term for harvesting grain crops. A push-behind mower, a riding mower, a zero-turn mower, a belly-mounted mower, and a pull-behind mower are the different types of mowers that help maintain lawns and pastures. For making hay, a sickle-bar mower, a drum mower, or a disc mower is used. Similarly, for a large area, brush mowers, batwing mowers, and fail mowers are required.
- Cultivator: The key function of a cultivator is to prepare a proper seedbed for the crop to be planted, to bury crop residue in the soil, to control weeds, and to mix the soil ensuring the growing crop has sufficient water and nutrients to grow well during the growing season. Cultivators come with shanks on the underside of a metal frame and small, narrow rods at the back end of the machine that smoothen the soil surface.
- Sprayer: As the name suggests, this equipment is used to apply herbicides, pesticides, and fertilisers on crops. Sprayers are available in different sizes, starting from man-portable units to trailed sprayers that are connected to a tractor.
- Brush Cutters: Brush cutters are powdered garden or agricultural tools that are used to trim weeds, small trees, and other foliage that are not accessible by a lawn mower or rotary mower. Different blades and trimmer heads are attached to brush cutters for specific applications.
Benefits of Agricultural Machinery
- Mechanisation enhances the efficiency and speed of farming operations. Farmers who could plough one acre of land with two horses per day can now plough twelve acres of land per day using a tractor.
- Using agricultural machinery reduces the requirement for human labour.
- To enhance agricultural production, chemicals, better varieties of seeds, and better farm machinery are used. Agricultural production also boosts labour productivity to a significant level with the help of mechanisation.
- Implementing the right farming machinery and equipment changes the overall status of farmers in rural areas and minimises their time and effort.
- Different agricultural machinery such as rotavator, cultivator, power tiller, combine harvester, and more minimises farmers’ dependency on labour significantly and enhances their quality of life too.
- Using farm equipment, any piece of land that has not been used for farming can easily be converted into a productive farm, resulting in proper land usage.
- To produce food for the increasing population, mechanisation helps farmers grow crops and grains to meet the growing food demand across the globe.
- Also, modern farm equipment such as combine harvester help farmers get cleaner and high-quality grain in less time that can be sold in the market quickly.
Farm mechanisation not only helps farmers enhance their economic condition and way of life, but also helps increase productivity and efficiency.
For more information about agricultural machinery in Australia, browse through the KG2 website, Australia’s largest independent farmer database, and know about the popular machinery that has helped several farmers in the country. For more personalised assistance, get in touch with our expert, who will help you choose the right equipment for your farm.