Developing and adapting mechanised CA machinery for smallholder systems of Southern Africa. Lewis T Mataba
DEVELOPING AND ADAPTING MECHANIZEDCONSERVATION ADAPTING MECHANIZED CONSERVATION DEVELOPING AND AGRICULTURE MACHINERY FORSMALLHOLDER SYSTEMS SMALLHOLDER SYSTEMS OF AGRICULTURE MACHINERY FOR OF SOUTHERN AFRICA SOUTHERN AFRICA LEWIS T MATABA GROWNET INVESTMENTS, HARARE LEWIS T MATABA GROWNET INVESTMENTS, HARARE Email: email@example.com
INTRODUCTION• In Southern Africa CA has generally been promoted based on hoe basin type.• Development agencies have targeted vulnerable communities to use this technology.• These communities are poor, face severe labour constraints, with some especially targeted as victims of HIV/AIDS pandemic.
GROWNET INTRODUCES MECHANIZED CA Reduces labour Plant on a big area Plant in time for better yields Spill-over effects to neighbours who can hire this equipment
LOCAL PRODUCTION OF CA EQUIPMENT• A few imported jab planters and direct seeders from Brazil • available but expensive and with limited spares.• In 2009 GROWNET Investments partnered with NGO’s and national extension services (AGRITEX) • to design and manufacture —direct seeders (based on Brazilian Fiterreli), —ripper tines, and —jab planters• The 1st GROWNET started equipment tested in 2010 cropping season both in Zimbabwe and Zambia.
EQUIPMENT ADAPTATIONS• The role of GROWNET has been to develop, modify and evaluate animal traction CA equipment in conjunction with research institutions and agricultural extension services.
Modification based on observations from allstakeholders led to the design of the new seeder withinclined seed plate, which is more appropriate to localfarmers.
CHALLENGES IN CA EQUIPMENT DEVELOPMENT• Limited access to financing equipment research & development —CIMMYT and FAO has been supportive of this process• Low product uptake due to limited awareness• So far dealing with referred and scattered communities —With high costs• There seem to be limited enthusiasm within the CA community to promote the mechanized equipment —There is potential costs saving in buying local CA equipment
WAY FORWARD• GROWNET Investments continues to have interest in supporting the development of mechanised CA equipment based on recommendations from end users.• GROWNET Investments will actively participate in initiatives that facilitate linkages between farmers, financiers and agro dealers.• GROWNET Investments appreciate the potential in business growth through enhanced mechanized CA adoption.• GROWNET Investments will take lessons learnt from the Congress to improve the adoption of mechanized CA equipment in Southern Africa.