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www.africanfarming.net March/April 2014

Europe m14.50 - Ghana C1.3 - Kenya KSH150 - Nigeria N200 - South Africa R18 - UK ÂŁ9 - USA $15

Poultry

Managing the watering system

Fruit farming Nurturing new opportunities

Sprinkler irrigation

Systems and their components

Serving

AGRICULTURE for

34

YEARS The South African built Piket 14-row fine seed drill works in traditional seedbeds or as a no-till drill. P34


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CONTENTS

Contents

www.africanfarming.net March/April 2014

News and Events

4

Europe m14.50 - Ghana C1.3 - Kenya KSH150 - Nigeria N200 - South Africa R18 - UK £9 - USA $15

A topical digest of news, views and events including Farmers’ Calendar. Poultry

Managing the watering system

Analysis

Fruit farming

10

Nurturing new opportunities

Sprinkler irrigation

Has Africa’s focus on farming borne fruit?

Systems and their components

Poultry

12

Serving

AGRICULTURE

Managing the watering system for intestinal integrity.

for

34

YEARS The South African built Piket 14-row fine seed drill works in traditional seedbeds or as a no-till drill. P34

Dairy Farming

16

Major corporations are increasingly working to source products, including fruit, from smallholder farmers in Africa. Credit: Isaiah Esipisu/IPS.

Getting superior Napier grass to dairy farmers in East Africa.

Fruit Farming

18

Nurturing new opportunities for fruit farmers - a look at Project Nurture which aims to double the fruit incomes of small-scale mango and passion fruit farmers in Kenya and Uganda.

Rice

20

Nigeria’s plans for self-sufficiency.

Pest Control

22

A look at some of the diseases afflicting African livestock and some of the measures used to control them.

Sprinkler Irrigation

Nigeria to be self-sufficient in rice production by 2015.

24

A look at some of the different components of a sprinkler irrigation system. The Floppy sprinkler is a unique South African product which leads to substantial water and energy savings.

Mechanisation

30

African Farming talked to Diego H de la Calle, Africa business director for Case IH and New Holland Agriculture, and discussed the role of mechanisation in Africa.

Tillage Equipment

34

Growing crops with reduced cultivations.

Managing Editor: Zsa Tebbit Editorial and Design team: Bob Adams, Hiriyti Bairu, Lizzie Carroll, David Clancy, Andrew Croft, Prashanth AP, Ranganath GS, Rhonita Patnaik, Ian Roullier, Genaro Santos, Nicky Valsamakis, and Ben Watts Publisher: Nick Fordham Advertising Sales Director: Pallavi Pandey Magazine Sales Manager: Richard Rozelaar Tel: +44 (0) 20 7834 7676, Fax: +44 (0) 20 7973 0076 email: richard.rozelaar@alaincharles.com Country China India Nigeria Singapore South Africa UAE USA

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An eight-row Horsch Focus TD strip-till cultivator and drill combination working in South Africa.

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Subscriptions: circulation@alaincharles.com Chairman: Derek Fordham Printed by: Wyndeham Grange Limited US Mailing Agent: African Farming & Food Processing USPS. No. 015-224 is published six times a year for US$90 per year by Alain Charles Publishing Ltd, University House, 11-13 Lower Grosvenor Place, London, SW1W 0EX, UK Periodicals Postage Paid at Rahway, NJ. Postmaster: send address corrections to: Alain Charles Publishing Ltd, c/o Mercury Airfreight International Ltd, 365 Blair Road, Avenel, NJ 07001. ISSN: 0266 8017 Serving the world of business

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EVENTS

Farming Calendar

F&B buyers from Africa target Africa’s Big 7 Expo

April 23-27

SIAM - Salon International de l’Agriculture au Maroc www.salon-agriculture.ma

28-2May Agrishow www.agrishow.com.br

MEKNES RIBEIRÃO PRETO

May 8-10

Ethiopex - Ethiopia Poultry Expo www.expoteams.com

ADDIS ABABA

13-16

NAMPO www.nampo.co.za

14-17

SIPSA-Agrisime & SIPSA-Agrofood www.sipsa-dz.net

14-18

FIB - Feira Internacional de Benguela www.eventsarena.co.ao

20-22

VIV Europe 2014 www.viveurope.nl

UTRECHT

4-6

IFTEX 2014 - International Floriculture Trade Fair www.hppexhibitions.com

NAIROBI

18-19

Risks in Agri Trading: Emerging Markets 2014 Summit www.agritradingrisks.com

GENEVA

22-24

Africa’s Big Seven www.exhibitionsafrica.com

BOTHAVILLE

FOR MORE THAN a decade, Africa’s Big Seven (AB7), the largest food and beverage trade show on the African continent, has provided the best networking platform and product showcase for producers, manufacturers and suppliers to penetrate lucrative African markets. AB7 2014 will take place in June in Johannesburg. “The past three years have seen a rapidly increasing number of exhibitors and visitors from African countries taking part in AB7,” said John Thomson, managing director of Exhibition Management Services (EMS),organisers of this world-renowned event. “Last year we had more than 16,000 visitors to AB7 and the co-located SAITEX, with 27 African countries represented.”

ALGIERS BENGUELA

June

MIDRAND

Refrigeration and Aircon boom for Africa “WITH RISING TEMPERATURES and global warming in the headlines, there is little doubt that efficient refrigeration systems and reliable cold chains are going to play a massive role in maintaining the integrity of perishable foods and products in Africa, creating significant business opportunities in the sector,” said John Thomson of Exhibition Management Services (EMS), organisers of the Refrigeration and Airconditioning 2014 exhibition, taking place in Cape Town from 2-4 July 2014. And the projections back up Thomson’s views. Global demand for commercial refrigeration equipment will increase by 4.4 per cent a year to US$32bn by the year 2016. “This market is the key focus of the RAC Africa 2014 exhibition, which will provide an effective networking platform for manufacturers and suppliers to explore new African markets, and connect with potential customers and partners,” continued Thomson.

Agri trading experts set to discuss emerging markets A SELECTION OF leading agri trading experts will converge at a conference in Geneva in June to discuss geopolitical risk and legal framework when operating in emerging markets, as well as economic and supply chain risks. The 'Risks in Agri Trading: Emerging Markets Summit 2014', organised by IRN and scheduled to take place from 18-19 June 2014, will look at topics ranging from currency and credit risks, to country risk and physical risk. Speakers from a host of major trading companies will be in attendance to offer their advice, including experts from Olam, Cargill, Ecom Trading, Louis Dreyfus and Export Trading Group. The launch of the event follows three successful editions of the Annual Soft Commodities Trading Summit in Geneva, also organised by IRN. The new platform has been designed to accommodate general managers, traders, treasurers, supply chain specialists, trade finance managers, risk management experts, operations managers and logisticians.

The event will feature two workshops, onstage discussions on topics such as credit risk and physical risk management, and specific case studies that will focus on key emerging regions. According to IRN, a Cocoa will be on the agenda during the conference. number of emerging Courtesy of World Cocoa Foundation. markets in Africa, Latin America, Southeast Asia and the Middle East have booming economies and plenty of natural resources. Many of the markets covered during the conference have the potential to become agribusiness hubs for products such as coffee, cocoa, sugar cane, rubber and grains.

VICTAM’s anniversary show in Cologne VICTAM INTERNATIONAL, THE organisers of the feed and grain processing exhibitions in Bangkok and Cologne, will celebrate its 50th Anniversary during its next event in Germany. The event will once again take place in Cologne and will feature three exhibitions in one event. The exhibitions are FIAAP International, VICTAM International and GRAPAS 4 African Farming - March/April 2014

International 2015. The shows, along with a series of technical conferences, will be held at Koelnmesse from 9 – 11 June 2015. This combination of the three shows together proved highly successful at the last event in Cologne when almost 300 companies worldwide came together in what was the largest dedicated international event for

the animal feed and grain processing industries. Indications are already showing that the 2015 event will be equally successful, with reservations and interest coming from many potential exhibitors, again from all over the world. The reason for the success is the related exhibitions. FIAAP (animal feed ingredients and additives) is directly related to VICTAM

(animal feed processing technology and ancillary equipment). Whilst VICTAM is also related to GRAPAS (flour/rice milling and grain processing together with ancillary equipment). The relationship of the shows brings a higher number of exhibitors which then also attracts a greater number of senior executives from the industries they serve. www.africanfarming.net


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NEWS Ethiopia promotes modern agricultural technology ETHIOPIA’S MINISTRY OF Science and Technology has said priority should be given to promotion and release of modern agricultural technologies among farmers with a view to improve agricultural production and ensure food security. The state minister Mahamuda Ahmed made the remark on a field visit at Sodo Rural Technology Promotion Center, producing and disseminating new and improved agricultural

technologies in South Ethiopia Peoples' State. He said releasing these technologies widely will help to achieve the goal set to double agricultural output at the end of the Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP) period. Production and distribution of improved seeds that provide high yield have been undertaken around the country to increase agricultural productivity. Together with distribution of

improved seeds, making modern technologies accessible among farmers will help to improve production and productivity thereby ensuring food security, the minister said. Micro and Small Enterprises Development Agency director general, GebreMeskel Challa, on his part, expressed the need to give priority to working closely with micro and small enterprises to disseminate technologies among farmers.

Phones and satellites help livestock farmers in semi-arid areas of Uganda LIVESTOCK FARMERS IN semi-arid areas of the country, who have been used to their traditional way of detecting climate-related challenges, are to be complimented by the use of smart phones, satellite imagery and wellequipped laboratories in an effort to improve livestock farming. According to the Daily Monitor, last January, the UK's Department for International Development (DfID) launched a 32bn shilling (US$13mn) two-year project which will use a number of modern technologies in detecting such hazards. It added that it will be implemented in conjunction with the ministries of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, Water and Environment and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The report said key components of the project include installation of equipment in district laboratories for animal surveillance and disease diagnosis, use of smart phones for quick data collection and information transfer in case of animal disease outbreak and use of satellite imagery to detect changes in climate as well as other challenges like lack of pasture or disease outbreak in a given area.

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The Daily Monitor quoted FAO official, James Okoth, as saying a total of 150 smart phones would be provided to community animal health workers, abattoirs and veterinary officers. The phones have a pre-installed programme that enables data collection in regard to animal surveillance and disease diagnosis and from various areas; information on animal health is sent to a veterinary officer who in turn disseminates it to policy makers at the ministry for quick action. "It is time saving and information is transferred as fast as possible," said Okoth, adding that satellite imagery would be used to take pictures of a given area regardless of the distance. These pictures will be used by experts to gather information of the area like vegetation, existing pasture for animals, drought, disease outbreak and animal population. The project will cover seven districts in Karamoja in north eastern Uganda, which is semi-arid and faces challenges posed by climatic change like emerging diseases, and officials there say the animal diseases in the region include Brucellosis, which mainly affects the reproductive organs of pregnant cows leading to abortion, rabies, Nagana and tuberculosis.

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NEWS

Zero grazing research to reduce diseases AFRICAN LIVESTOCK FARMERS should turn to zero grazing system to reduce the incidences of tick borne diseases, new research says. Conducted by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) in collaboration with the University of Pretoria in South Africa and UK’s Universities of Edinburgh and Nottingham, the research notes that free range systems expose livestock to ticks - increasing the chances of contracting diseases. Among the most common tick-borne diseases are East Coast Fever (ECF), (Gall sickness) Anaplasmosis, heart water and Nairobi sheep Zebu cattle on a breeding farm in Kenya. disease. “Animals subjected to zero-grazing systems had 80 per cent lower chance of contracting ECF than in farms where there is no tick control”, noted the study. Researchers put 548 zebu cattle under surveillance during the first year of life and assessed their infection and clinical status every five weeks. Caused by protozoa known as Theleria parva, East Coast Fever is transmitted by the brown ear tick, Rhipicephalus appendiculatus. The disease kills one cow every 30 seconds. Lives of more than 25mn cattle are at risk in the 11 countries of sub-Saharan Africa where the disease is now endemic. It was a relief last year when researchers from the ILRI and the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI) launched a vaccine to control East Coast fever. Kenya’s directorate of Veterinary Services conducted the trials of the ITM vaccines giving it a clean record on safety and effectiveness.

“East Coast Fever continues to cause major economic and social losses to families in eastern, central and southern Africa. Of the 46mn cattle in this region almost half are at risk from this disease,“ observed Phil Toye and Henry Kiara, two ILRI scientists that have been involved in the vaccine research that has spanned over four decades. Researchers, however, added that controlling tick infestation would lower the disease burden among resource poor African rural farmers. The study also suggests that calf mortality can be lowered through improved husbandry to reduce levels of pathogen exposure to calves. The research observed that presence of trypanosomes - that cause trypanosomiasis - increased the risk of death from East Coast Fever by up to six times. Animals suffering from trypanosomiasis have lower appetite, weight and anaemia – worsening ECF infections. It further added that integrated tick, trypanosome and worm control programmes are likely to have bigger and longer term effects on the overall health of animals and poverty reduction. This is especially important in protecting livestock assets belonging to people living in poverty against mortality and reducing losses in production. Researchers concluded that an integrated approach to ticks, tsetse fly and worms will help fight these scourges that afflict millions of farmers in Africa and the developing world.

Mwangi Mumero

IFTEX sold out with record number of exhibitors THE INTERNATIONAL FLOWER Trade Exhibition IFTEX has hit the roof with a record number of exhibitors in its third edition this year. An all time high of 160 exhibitors, a 25 per cent increase compared to last year’s number, was achieved three months before the show has opened, marking IFTEX with the fastest growth ever of a floriculture trade fair in HPP’s 30 year history.

6 African Farming - March/April 2014

The biggest representation exhibiting in the show will be Kenyan flower growers, but also growers from other flower producing nations will present themselves during this exciting international flower trade event. Growers from Ethiopia, Uganda, South Africa, Tanzania as well as growers from countries from South America will be showing at this edition.

In addition there is a growing number of preregistered buyers compared to 2013, as well as a considerable growth in the diversity of the countries where the visitors come from. The increasing number of international flower buyers from Europe, especially from Holland, is surprising and indicates a strong growing interest of the Dutch to get more directly involved with their Kenyan suppliers.

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NEWS

Kenya looks to India for farm mechanisation KENYA IS PLANNING to mechanise its agriculture and looking to India for farm equipment that will bring down production costs. The East African country is also bringing in policy changes to transform the sector from subsistence farming to commercial agriculture. "We are looking at India for mechanisation support. Currently, we have around 15,000 tractors but there is a severe deficit. The requirement is for 100,000 tractors," Felix Koskei, Kenya's cabinet secretary for agriculture, livestock and fisheries, said recently. "After having discussions with the manufacturers we will start talks with the Indian government. We have already spoken to Indian companies like Sonalika Tractors, Apollo and many others," added Koskei, who was here for the AsiaAfrica Agri-Business Forum meeting organised by the Indian government in association with industry chamber FICCI. He noted in this context that Kenya had secured an US$80mn line of credit from Brazil to buy 2,000 pieces of farm equipment. Koskei said his country was making "key policy changes to bring down the cost of production", which was very high because of the high cost of inputs like fertiliser, seeds and mechanisation. "We want to bring it down by 50 per cent," he said, adding: "We will be looking at subsidies for inputs like fertiliser and seeds." Agriculture contributes 25 per cent of Kenya's GDP and it involves around 80 per cent of the country's population. Kenya produces maize, wheat, rice and a variety of pulses. "But we are also a net importer of rice, wheat and maize. Maize is our staple. We grow it but it is not enough," Koskei said. The country also wants to shift from rain-fed agriculture to irrigation. "Currently, the government wants to irrigate one million acres in five years so that production of food crops is consistent and sustainable," he said. Koskei said the government expects that all these efforts will double production. "We want the agriculture sector to grow by double digits per year. The growth rate now is four per cent." "In addition we are looking at valueadded equipment like dairy processing plants. We will encourage manufacturers to open assembling plants in Kenya," he added.

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New Holland welcomes Ugandan agricultural minister NEW HOLLAND AGRICULTURE importer Matforce in Senegal organised a three-day agricultural show in Dakar with the collaboration of the CIFA centre for training and professional development in agriculture. Speakers at the conference on Day 1 highlighted the pivotal role of mechanisation in achieving selfsufficiency in rice production for Senegal. New Holland explained how it is prepared, with its broad product offering and working closely with Matforce, to support the transition to an efficient and productive agriculture. Salon machinisme agricole in Dakar. The ‘Salon Agricole’ was held in Ndiaye, at the Centre Interprofessionnel pour la Formation aux Métiers de l’Agriculture (CIFA) in Ndiaye, Saint-Louis. The event attracted a strong participation from professional agricultural organisations, farmers, government officials and, in view of their key role in the country’s agriculture, women’s organisations.

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NEWS

VIV and meat safety CONSUMER ATTITUDE AND behaviour towards food is rapidly changing on a worldwide scale. There is a Ethiopian man ploughing. strong focus on health issues Photo: Toby Sexton. including healthier food. Animal production and processing is facing a difficult time. After mad cow, classical swine and avian influenza, consumers are sceptical and want guarantees about the meats they eat. Meat safety can only be guaranteed if every step in the meat production chain is carefully monitored and controlled. To stay current with these developments, today’s meat business is about improving yield, quality, hygiene, traceability, portioning, performance, profitability, efficiency and transparency. The trend is towards systems that cover the entire food chain from primary production to finished products: from feed to meat. And that’s where VIV comes in. Over 30 years ago VIV started as a concept for animal production in poultry and pigs and became an innovator on the subject. Recently, VIV stretched its profile and shaped it to today’s requirements on meat safety. The concept is called Feed to Meat and involves all sectors in the meat production chain. Animal feed production and further meat processing will be added to the exhibition profile. As a result VIV Europe will become a platform where all participants in meat production can work together to provide the guarantees consumers are demanding. VIV Europe will feature a seminar programme based on related topics. As a more integrated showcase, VIV Europe will better serve exhibitor & visitor needs.

Firm set to establish fish farming school in Nigeria BNOT HAREL NIGERIA Ltd, an Israeli company, which deals with agriculture integration solutions, said it has concluded plans to open a school in Lagos, where fish farmers from various parts of the country will be trained regularly on fish farming. The Lagos regional manager of the company, Ofir Segal, revealed this during the opening ceremony of the 28th National Conference of the Fisheries Society of Nigeria (FISON) in Abuja. ‘Every week or every twoweeks, we are going to hold lessons, so farmers all over Nigeria can come and study. We can educate them how to do best practice. We are going to bring people from abroad to teach them how to do things,’ he said. Segal said the company, which produces Raana fish feed has already established a similar school and factory in Ghana. He stressed that the school will equip Nigerian farmers with technical knowhow in modern fish farming as is done in Israel, adding that the government blockage of frozen fish into the country will help the industry to blossom. ‘We try to bring to Nigeria the technology that will give the most to the farmers so that they can work, and relate with them and that is going to benefit them. Our company will not sell any technology that will not benefit the farmer,’ Ofir stated.

Fish farming in the Niger Delta.

8 African Farming - March/April 2014

Enhancing sustainable food security in Zimbabwe THE LAKE HARVEST Aquaculture project on Lake Kariba in Zimbabwe, financed by the AfDB Group, is the largest sustainable Tilapia fish farm in Africa. It creates jobs in Zimbabwe, particularly for women fish traders, and provides an important supply of affordable protein to the southern Africa region. The AfDB Group invested US$8mn to finance a viable agro-industrial project in a fragile state. This will be the AfDB Group’s first private sector investment in Zimbabwe, as part of its efforts to selectively re-engage in the country. The total fish consumption of major regional southern markets of Zambia, South Africa, DRC, Malawi and Angola is 1.3mn tonnes. The total unmet demand for tilapia in these markets is 100,000 tonnes per year. Lake Harvest Aquaculture will produce 20,000 tonnes of fish annually. The company is primarily targeting African markets with Zimbabwe expected to absorb 37 per cent of the production. It will export a further 50 per cent to markets in the southern African region. Lake Harvest Aquaculture is considered by many experts to be a model for sustainable fish farming on the continent. Lake Harvest is expected to generate more than 900 new high-quality permanent jobs by 2015, and will contribute an estimated US$33mn at present value terms, in government revenues over the next 10 years. The project’s developmental benefits include job creation, economic growth, gender needs and diversification. Most of the fish is sold by women traders. It will also contribute to increasing government revenues, regional trade and integration, foreign exchange generation and enhanced food security in Zimbabwe and neighbouring countries.

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NEWS

Esoko helpline to benefit Ghanaian farmers ESOKO GHANA HAS set-up a farmer helpline that allows farmers in Ghana to receive agricultural support from a group of experts in the country Farmers can dial 1900 at standard rates to access the service to be the first of its kind in the country, Esoko Ghana said. The company stated that the helpline will be accessible on Vodafone, MTN and Airtel networks as well as Tigo and Glob, which will be added later this year. The languages that will be made available to customers are Dagbani, Mampruli, Twi, Kusaal, Frafra, Sissali, Dagaari, Wali, Ewe, Ga, Fante and Hausa, Esoko Ghana revealed. According to Esoko CEO, Daves Esoko, the farmer helpline was vital for any type of SMS service being offered by Esoko and other service providers. “There is a lot of hype out there about how smart phones and SMS

services can help farmers but really you've got to go back to basics and offer them answers in their own language from dedicated professionals they can trust,” Esoko said. Esoko's farmer helpline manager, Mary Naah, commented on the pilot programme which was rolled out recently: “It is really exciting to find during that pilot that some farmers called in to find out whether it will it rain in Tumu on Saturday, and some even asked when they can plant, where they can find pesticides and what do if rains have not fallen.”

Zambia gets post-harvest technology THE COMMERCIAL AGRIBUSINESS for Sustainable Horticulture (CASH) project has introduced two post-harvest technologies for smallholder farmers to store crops in a bid to avoid crops going to waste. The two post-harvest technologies include the Shade-bot, which is a structure that keeps harvest out of direct sunlight from harvest to market. The other one is Cool-bot, a small

room that uses an air-conditioning unit, insulation and a source of power to keep harvested crops cool. CASH said the two technologies are key to the growth of the agriculture sector in the country. ‘’The CASH project recently introduced the Shade-bot and Cool-bot systems, two postharvest technologies extremely valuable to smallholder farmer by keeping crops out of

direct sunlight from harvest to market,’’ information posted on the projects’ website says. CASH is a global development alliance under the Feed the Future (FtF) initiative by the United States government and is being implemented by the Agribusiness in Sustainable Natural African Plant Products (ASNAPP).

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ANALYSIS

A decade of CAADP has brought progress across the continent but too few returns on agriculture spend in most countries.

Has Africa's focus on farming borne fruit?

I

N JULY 2003, AFRICAN leaders meeting in Maputo, Mozambique, committed to allocating 10 per cent of their national budgets to agriculture by 2008, and to increasing annual agricultural growth to six per cent of GDP. Their aim: to eliminate hunger, and reduce poverty and food insecurity. Their instrument of choice: the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), a platform that brings together key players – including the government, the private sector and civil society – at national, regional and international levels to improve co-ordination and share knowledge. Ten years later, just eight countries – Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Malawi, Mali, Niger and Senegal – have reached or exceeded the 10 per cent spending target, and nine – Angola, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Congo-Brazzaville, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Nigeria and Tanzania – have achieved agricultural growth of more than six per cent per annum. By any standards, CAADP should be considered a failure. But speak to almost anyone involved in agriculture in Africa – NGOs, farmers, donors and the UN – and they will tell you it has been successful. "Look at any other sector in Africa and look at what CAADP has been able to do for the past 10 years … I think that CAADP has been a key driver when it comes to refocusing on a priority sector for Africa," said Mouhamed Lamine Ndiaye, pan-African head of economic justice at Oxfam. "We have here a forum for political dialogue whereby the African constituents bring the African perspective on agricultural issues," said Bernard Rey, deputy head of the EU's rural development, food security and nutrition unit. "As a development process, the [European] commission believes it is exemplary. It has its difficulties but it's interesting." While meaningful dialogue between the government and farmers has not been possible in many countries, where it has taken place, for example in Kenya, results have been impressive. "CAADP has really contributed quite significantly to bring the public and private sector to sit around the same round table – it has brought that paradigm shift within our operations," explained Peter Mwangi Gitika, general manager in charge of programmes, projects and resource mobilisation for the Kenyan National Farmers Federation. "Farmers are able to talk, and they are listened to." When the programme was established, spending on agriculture in Africa – both in the public sector and development aid – was declining, said Martin Bwalya, head of CAADP. Spending and growth were stagnant and some countries were regressing. "[Agriculture] needed massive reform. It was not just an issue that you pour money into – that's what we did during the four or five decades before CAADP. So CAADP was also saying, what more do we need to do? It was pointing to very systemic reforms," he added. Tackling fundamental issues According to Bwalya, over the past 10 years, the continent has begun to tackle some fundamental issues. Ethiopia, he says, has demonstrated clearly the importance of institutional reform in supporting sustained agricultural growth. In Rwanda, quality investments, better planning, 10 African Farming - March/April 2014

Meaningful dialogue has taken place between the Kenyan government and farmeres with impressive results. Photo: Adam Novak, Flickr and the Global Call for Climate Action.

[In Kenya] CAADP has really contributed quite significantly to bring the public and private sector to sit around the same round table. accountable systems and the use of ICT have made a real impact. One criticism levelled against CAADP is that it has done little to help the most marginalised farmers – women smallholders, who on average account for about 55 per cent of the labour force and carry out about 70 per cent of farm work, but represent just eight per cent of land ownership. "We realised that, after analysing [agricultural] investment plans, we could not find any specific budget that goes to women," said Fatou Mbaye, livelihoods thematic manager with Acord, whose research has shown that when women have equal access to land and resources they can increase crop yields by 25 - 30 per cent and reduce the level of hunger by 12 - 17 per cent. "We need to invest in women farmers in order to increase production, but also to reduce hunger and malnutrition," she said. "We definitely need, at national level, some really strong frameworks that support women farmers – especially in terms of land reform." Land rights still a contentious issue Land rights remain one of the most contentious issues facing Africa. "We will not be able to do anything on agriculture if we don't resolve the issue of land," Ndiaye said. The declaration by the African Union that 2014 will be the year of agriculture and food security has prompted calls for a reassessment of CAADP. It follows the AU's pledge in July to eradicate hunger on the continent by 2025, although no concrete plans on how this would be achieved were forthcoming. Debates about the future of agriculture are expected over the coming months. www.africanfarming.net


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ANALYSIS

What next for the programme? Adama Coulibaly, head of the UN economic commission for Africa's agricultural production systems sector, believes the quality of investments needs to be improved. "We need to rethink the way that public spending in agriculture is made … If we are putting in just US$1, we have to ensure that this generates more than US$1," he said. For some countries – for example, Ethiopia, Ghana and Mauritius – the return on spending on agriculture has exceeded expectations. But for the majority of African countries, the transformative impact of each dollar spent has not produced the right results. "We need to shoot for overall growth in the range of two digits but to do that agriculture cannot be the only driver. We need to make sure that we have agricultural growth with something else – services and industry," insisted Coulibaly. This is why the UN economic commission for Africa has been pushing for commodity-based industrialisation, he says. "That is where most of the value addition and wealth can be created." h

In Ethiopia the return on spending on agriculture has exceeded expectations. Photo: Ethiopian ATA.

Ethiopia, he says, has demonstrated clearly the importance of institutional reform in supporting sustained agricultural growth.

Helping Africa to help itself: the Uganda community farm THE ANSWER TO Africa’s extreme poverty could be Africa itself, if a new agricultural initiative lives up to its expectations. The Uganda Community Organic Farm (UCOF) aims to become a model farm, based on Community Supported Agriculture principles, that the rest of Africa can follow. Pursuing a comprehensive agricultural programme, it intends to define a precedent for Africa’s rural poor to tread their own path towards sustainable social and environmental change. Organic Perspectives, a Ugandan non-profit organisation, is behind the project, which has just launched a US$80,000 crowdfunding appeal through the Indiegogo website. Founder Anthony Kalulu hopes the farm will help rural smallholder farmers embrace a self-help effort away from extreme poverty. “This is about sustainable change for

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Africa’s rural poor,” he said. “We want to encourage them to act for themselves, to do things for themselves, and to hold the plough of change with their own hands through learning and applying entrepreneurial skills.” The farm plans to train local farmers on organic horticulture systems that have faster/high returns, and to help the farmers access stable and collaborative organic marketing channels - particularly through a practice of Community Supported Agriculture - which the group says will be the first concept of its kind on the continent. “By providing smallholder farmers with a practical organic farming learning centre, based on low-input, sustainable practices, we can provide these communities with the ability to feed themselves, rather than relying on perpetual handout

programmes.” “What’s more UCOF, and farms following the same principles, will be able to generate hundreds of thousands of dollars a year by generating and supplying a high-value collective market for their organic produce. “These funds will be able to fund local development projects in the same local communities,” says Anthony. The plan is to acquire between 20 and 40 ha of land on the shores of Lake Kyoga, in the Kamuli or Buyende regions, and to assemble the necessary tools and materials to establish the programme. “We’ve a number of ‘perks’ to offer donors and supporters,” said Anthony, “including any produce from the farm that can be delivered internationally, and sponsored gifts of produce, farm membership and woodstoves to local households.

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POULTRY

To comply with the EU’s ban of the use of antibiotics as growth promoters, farmers must find alternative methods to ensure birds’ health, such as managing the watering system to create a hygienic environment in the poultry house.

Managing the watering system for intestinal integrity

I

T IS ALMOST impossible to overemphasise the importance of water to poultry flocks. A chicken is 70 per cent water: a loss of only 10 per cent of that water will result in the bird's death. And, a single day without water will result in a layer to stop laying. Water is a major component of blood and plays a major role in transporting to the cells and carrying waste away. It fills almost all space in the cells and between them. It lubricates the joints. Water is also a primary element in two of the most important processes that occur in chickens - digestion and respiration, which is key to thermoregulation.

Wet litter poses a very definite danger to poultry flocks. Providing a healthier environment can decrease the incidence of intestinal diseases like necrotic enteritis and coccidiosis. Both diseases are endemic to poultry operations, and experts estimate necrotic enteritis costs the world poultry industry US$2bn annually. When birds are healthy, they use the nutrients they ingest for growth. If they are suffering from infection, they must use those nutrients to fight the disease. Necrotic enteritis results from the proliferation of the bacterium Clostridium perfringens in the intestines. Most chickens have these bacteria in their guts, but they are usually in the lower intestines and caeca and do not pose a problem. A triggering factor, such as coccidiosis, is necessary for the bacteria to proliferate at the point where they migrate to the upper intestines and cause harm to the birds. Ideally, water should be clear, odourless and tasteless for the poultry flock. It should have no bacteria in it. Certain levels of minerals and chemicals appear to have little or no effect on poutry flocks. But when those levels exceed the norms, birds either sicken or stop drinking, or both. Additionally, bacteria in the water can have a serious impact on the flock. If the particular flock is a breeder/parent stock operation, the disease can be passed on to the eggs, resulting in diseased chicks. A poorly managed watering system can result in biofilm in the pipes and wet litter. Both conditions can cause a poultry flock to become infected with necrotic enteritis or other intestinal diseases.

Automated, sealed chicken watering system. Image source: The Chicken Fountain LLC.

12 African Farming - March/April 2014

Chickens drinking from the BriteTap chicken waterer. Image source: Chickenwaterer.com.

Biofilm results when bacteria in the water become attached to the walls of the pipe. Regardless of how the water is sanitised, some bacteria will remain. The bacteria begin to exude a sticky substance after attaching to the pipe walls creating a biofilm. This attracts additional bacteria and within a matter of days, the watering system has an active colony of pathogens. Eventually, portions of the biofilm can break off and either clog the drinkers, causing them to leak, or supply bacteria to the birds in their drinking water. The best way to combat biofilm is flushing the water lines regularly with high pressure. Ziggity recommends flushing the lines in combination with a hydrogen peroxide-based cleaner. Properly formulated, hydrogen peroxide becomes a powerful oxidising agent that scrubs the interior of the pipe and drinker clean of biofilm. While chlorine is very effective at killing certain bacteria, chlorine alone will not keep your water lines clean. Research shows that bacteria entrenched in a biofilm are much more resilient to chlorine than freefloating bacteria. Wet litter poses a very definite danger to poultry flocks. The first danger from wet litter is ammonia release. Besides the unpleasant smell, the ammonia can harm the birds' respiratory tracts and greatly reduces the immune response. This make the birds more susceptible to other diseases. Wet litter can also promote the growth of pathogens that can harm the birds. This is especially true of coccidiosis, which so often is the trigger event for Clostridium perfringens proliferation. Farmers should strive for friable litter Ideally, farmers should strive for friable litter - litter with a moisture content of about 20 to 25 per cent. A simple test to determine if litter is friable is to grab a handful and squeeze. If the litter clumps briefly and then crumbles apart, it has the correct moisture content. If it won't clump at all, it is too dry and will create dusty conditions in the poultry house. If it remains clumped together, it is too wet. Ziggity recommends taking the following steps to keep litter conditions optimal: • Filter the water before it enters the poultry house. This removes sediment and impurities that might lodge in the drinker mechanism and cause it to leak. High pressure flushing to remove biofilm will also remove sediment in the watering lines.

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These poultry watering cups can be removed for easy cleaning.

• Walk the house on a regular basis, looking for leaks. You should repair any leaks immediately. • Set the water line height so that the birds are drinking at a 50-55° angle (imagine a line drawn from the bird's feet to its beak). At this angle, almost all of the water discharged by the drinkers as the birds peck at them goes into the birds and not onto the litter. The birds grow rapidly, so you must adjust the line height daily. • Adjust the water pressure regularly to maintain friable litter. Litter readings are the best method for determining water pressure. Pressure that is too high will wet the litter. Litter will dry out if the pressure is too low, and the birds will not get sufficient water. Looking for ways to replace the use of antibiotics Researchers are seeking a variety of methods to replace the use of antibiotics in poultry flocks, including vaccines, anticoccidials and probiotics. However, keeping the poultry house environment as hygienic as possible through proper management of the watering system can help maintain intestinal integrity in your flocks with or without antibiotics. h Ziggity Systems Inc

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NEWS

Ghana government proposes help for poultry sector

Prinzen launches new egg grader: Ovograder

DR HANNAH LOUISA Bisiw, Ghana's deputy minister of food and agriculture, has indicated that the government is working on a proposal for funding to revamp the poultry industry. The government is seeking to ensure adequate meat and dairy products are produced to meet the country's protein requirement, Bisiw said. Providing funding to the Ghana poultry industry will also help Ghana become more self-sufficient and less reliant on the import of meat and poultry products. Ghana currently spends more than US$300bn on meat and poultry imports, according to a Ghanaweb report. Bisiw noted that the country's national annual meat requirement is likely to increase in the near future, further creating the need for profitability in the Ghana poultry industry.

PRINZEN HAS INTRODUCED their new electronic egg grader for onfarm use. The Ovograder is designed for efficient and convenient onfarm grading of hatching eggs and is the successor of the Elgra 3 grader. The machine offers an effective operating capacity of 30,000 eggs per hour. With the introduction of the Ovograder, Prinzen has responded to the needs of larger breeder farms and egg producers who can now choose the grading machine that perfectly fits their operation. The Elgra 3 grader will remain available for medium-sized farms, offering a value-for-money machine for selecting and setting hatching eggs. The Ovograder is to be used inline and combined with one of the PSPC packing machines for setting hatching eggs on setter trays or on 30-cell trays. Grading of hatching eggs results in an improved hatching process and optimises the uniformity of chicks. The Ovograder offers an effective operating capacity of 30,000 eggs per hour. It can be set to select two specific weight ranges, resulting in four predefined classes. Most eggs are routed to the connected PSPC egg packer. Eggs, of which the weight is set as non-hatching eggs, are automatically sorted and routed to the packing table for manual collection. The touch screen control panel displays valuable information such as egg

Cracked corn improves broiler performance IN A RECENT study from New Zealand, five diets containing 60 per cent finely ground corn (hammer milled) or 15, 30, 45 and 60 per cent coarsely cracked corn (roller milled) replacing finely ground corn, weight for weight, were tested in broilers from 11 to 35 days post-hatch. Weight gain increased with increasing inclusion levels of coarse corn. Feed intake increased at 15 per cent of coarse corn inclusion, plateaued until 45 per cent, and then increased again at 60 per cent. Breast meat yield decreased and abdominal fat increased with increasing inclusion levels of coarse corn, but there was no effect on carcass yield. It was concluded that feeding coarse corn increases weight gain, modifies gut microflora profile toward beneficial species and can completely replace ground corn in broilers fed mash diets.

New & Used Food Machines All With Warranty Bowl Cutters Used Seydelmann 120 litre Bowl Cutter Used Rex 200 litre S/S Bowl Cutter S/S bowl New Fatosa 35 litre Bowl cutter S/S bowl Mincer and Mixer Grinders Used Hobart 56 Mincer, 15 Hp motor Used Laska 130 Mincer all stainless steel auto Used Hobart 4346 Mixer Grinder Used Wolfking 140 Mixer Grinder Used Kilia 130 Mincer with mix arm New Fatosa PSA 160 Auto self feed Mincer Used Weiler 11 inch frozen meat block Mincer Used KS 46 Hp – 320 Mincemaster upright Emulsifier Vacuum Packers and Shrink Tunnels New ATM Table top vacuum packer, single phase New ATM Single chamber for long fish etc New ATM single chamber vacuum packer New ATM double chamber vacuum packer New ATM large single chamber vacuum packer Used Cryovac CJ 51 Heat shrink tunnel Used Mondini gas flush tray sealer, year 2002 Used Ilpra Tray Sealer, Model Speedy, year 2003

Mixers and Tumblers New Fatosa 80 litre paddle Mixer Used IFM 1,000 litre twin ribbon Mixer Used Lutetia 150 kg vacuum Tumbler Used Lutetia 400 Kg vacuum Tumbler Used Ruhle 600 litre scrape Mixer Tumbler Dicers, Flaker, Grater Used Ruhle SR1 dicer with multi grid Used Treif Dicer 84 x 84 chamber Used Biro Bandsaw, sliding table, single phase Used AEW 400, Year 2004 bandsaw, sliding table Used AEW 400 Bandsaw sliding table Miscellaneous Used Koppens VM 600 HS Former Used Vemag Robot 500 Vacuum Filler Used BCH steam Vessel 500 litres, Mix & tipping Used Do Boy Stainless steel bag sealer Used Rapidaire two trolley thro’ door cooker Used Talsa 120 litre electric cooker tank Used Nilma Pasta Cooker, auto cook & empty Used Vertical bag clipper Used Ranger Apollo skinless sausage Peeler Used Grote 713 slicer stacks and shingles

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numbers per house and numbers in a specific weight range. Data can be retrieved via the integrated USB port and provides useful information to keep track of the performance of the entire flock. Another interesting area of operation is the use of the Ovograder for on-farm pre-selecting of table eggs in specific weight ranges like S, M, L and XL egg size. Its capacity of 30,000 eggs per hour ensures that the grader perfectly operates inline with high capacity egg packing machines. The Ovograder can be configurated with the Smartpack or the Speedpack and one or two additional packing machines. This way predefined table egg sizes are automatically collected on 30-cell trays. Just like all Prinzen machines, the Ovograder has a robust design and is constructed from durable materials. Special attention is paid to the hygienic design of the egg grader. Vital parts are easily accessible for cleaning and maintenance.

Nigerian Dayntee Farms installs new hatchery NIGERIAN POULTRY PRODUCER Dayntee Farms has installed a new hatchery equipped with Petersime conventional setters and hatchers with a total setting capacity of four million eggs per year. This initial capacity is planned to be doubled in 2014. Ayo Alade, managing director at Dayntee Farms, commented: "The mission of our business is to provide Nigerians with affordable, top quality poultry products that comply with our high standards. This is achieved through a strict bio-security programme at the hatchery. We strongly believe Petersime's incubators and hatchery equipment will help us to achieve this goal." Installation of the incubators has been realised by Chi Ltd, Petersime's distributor for Nigeria, directed by Martin Middernacht. Chi will be taking care of spare parts and technical support during the entire hatchery's lifetime. www.africanfarming.net


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NEWS

EM Holding signs MoU to support poultry production

Improved health for broilers

EM HOLDING, THE parent company of EMPAS, a company engaged in the business of industrialising poultry farming in The Gambia, has commissioned a soft launch of a state-of-the-art world class poultry hatchery, which also witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between EM Holdings and Reliance Financial Services. The new MoU will avail the two companies with the opportunity to work together in providing finance to the out-growers in the poultry farming valued chain at their Farato farm. Reliance Financial Services managing director, Baboucarr Khan, signed the agreement on behalf of his company while EM Holdings chairman, Edrissa Mass Jobe represented his company and signed. At the signing ceremony Jobe highlighted the importance of the occasion, which was to launch the Farato Hatchery Farms and the signing of the MoU with Reliance. Explaining the business structure of the farms to the audience he said the initiative encompasses key processes involved in the valued chain of the poultry sub-sector. Jobe noted that the parenting of the eggs to the transformational processes as well as the hatching of the eggs to chicks, are done using the latest state-of-the-art technology. He further disclosed that the total cost of the investment amounts to more than US$4mn. He lauded Reliance Financial Services its timely response in addressing one of the biggest challenges faced by poultry outgrowers that is access to affordable finance and more importantly their capacity to structure a financing scheme along the value chain of the poultry sub-sector, devoid of all the bureaucracies and endless paperwork that one experiences with the conventional banks.

A STUDY BY the Dutch health authority GD Pluimvee shows that infections with the ESBLbacteria by broilers is mostly caused by horizontal transmission due to unhygienic circumstances in Broilers in a BroMaxx colony house. the poultry house. These bacteria are the cause of the growing crisis of antibiotic resistance in humans and threaten to become a big danger for public health. This study shows that broilers living on slats have significantly less infections. This is because they are separated from manure. With the development of the BroMaxx broiler colony system, Jansen Poultry Equipment has managed to tackle health problems by developing a system which removes manure out of the house. Animals live on slats and underneath manure belts remove manure out of the house. The BroMaxx housing system creates a hygienic environment for broilers and therefore eliminates an important cause of the ESBLbacteria. The amount of diseases will decrease as well as the need for antibiotics. Results of broiler production in the BroMaxx broiler colony system show that the amount of antibiotics used to prevent illnesses is significantly lower than traditional housing of broilers. Besides, less illnesses such as respiratory disease and footpad dermatitis and breast blisters do not occur as birds do not live on their own manure. Comfortable FlexFloor slats give excellent support to the birds’ feet and breast. The slat confirms itself to the shape of the broiler’s body and allows air to ventilate their body.

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DAIRY FARMING

To meet demand for high-yielding, disease-resistant fodder from smallholder dairy farmers in East Africa, scientists from the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI) and the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) worked together to select and distribute smut-resistant varieties of Napier grass.

Getting superior Napier grass to dairy farmers in East Africa

D

AIRY FARMING, KENYA’S leading livestock sector activity, is vital for the livelihoods and food security of millions of Kenyans. More than 80 per cent of milk produced and sold in Kenya comes from smallholder farmers, typically raising just one or two dairy cows on small plots of land. Women perform half of all dairy related activities in Kenya, which improves household welfare, primarily through increased household income and milk consumption.

Being able to provide enough good quality fodder is by far the most important factor in achieving high milk quality and yield. With a growing population and shrinking areas for pasture, cattle are increasingly being fed on crop residues, cultivated fodder and some concentrates. Ninety per cent of farmers now produce on-farm feeds. Being able to provide enough good quality fodder is by far the most important factor in achieving high milk quality and yield, with a well-fed animal producing two or three times more milk than an averagely fed one. The high yielding fodder, Napier grass Pennisetum purpureum - has become by far

the most important due to its wide adaptation to different regions, high yield and ease of propagation and management. Napier grass constitutes between 40-80 per cent of the forage for more than 0.6mn smallholder dairy farms. With fodder in high demand, selling Napier grass as a business has good potential for improving smallholder livelihoods. According to a recent survey, up to 58 per cent of Kenyan smallholder farmers already sell fodder, including crop residues, straw or grass. But with the systemic growth has come a catalogue of woes from diseases to prohibitive market prices for the grasses which has now threatened the other 100mn East African livestock that rely on the grass. In the early 1990s, head smut disease, caused by the fungus Ustilago kamerunensis, began to have a devastating impact on Napier grass. Spread rapidly by wind and infected plant material, smut turned valuable Napier grass into thin, shrivelled stems and reduced yields by 25-46 per cent. For smallholder farmers, the threat was very serious. Tolerant high yielding varieties is a costeffective solution Disease control using systemic fungicide in fodder crops is very expensive and therefore beyond the means of most smallholders. Using tolerant high yielding varieties is a cost effective solution and avoids the additional costs of moving to a different feeding system. The

International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) maintains an international collection of forage germplasm under the auspices of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. The state-of-the-art genebank, based in Ethiopia, holds more than 19,000 forage accessions, including 60 genotypes of Napier grass. In 1992, scientists from the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI) and ILRI began collaborative work to screen new clones of Napier grass for improved productivity. The best lines were released as Kakamega I and II. In 1996, in response to the threat of head smut, KARI began further screening to find smut-resistant varieties of Napier grass. Kakamega I and Kakamega II were identified as both high-yielding and resistant to head smut. The favourable results obtained in the laboratory were confirmed in farmers’ fields and work began immediately to multiply planting material in government institutions. Within the first year, cuttings were distributed to more than 10,000 smallholder farmers. In 2001, KARI’s Muguga research station received numerous requests for Kakamega root splits to multiply the material, and some schools in the area are, at the request of parents, using school gardens to multiply the material. The most productive clone, Kakamega I, is grown at bulking sites maintained by Farmer Training Centres and Parent-Teacher Associations and disseminated

The high-yielding fodder, Napier grass, has become extremely important due to its wide adaptation to different regions, high yield and ease of propogation and management.

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DAIRY FARMING

Napier grass stunt, another serious disease, was identified in Western Kenya in 2002. Affected shoots become pale yellow in colour and seriously dwarfed.

through KARI, the local agricultural offices and by farmer-to-farmer exchange. The new varieties - developed using material from Swaziland and Zimbabwe by KARI - are not quite as productive as the best of Kenya’s local Napier grass varieties, but have still proven popular in smut-affected areas. By 2007, 13 per cent of farmers in smut prone areas of Kenya were using Kakamega I for zero grazing systems. Another serious disease - Napier grass stunt - was identified in Western Kenya in 2002. Affected shoots become pale yellow in colour and seriously dwarfed. Often the whole stool is affected, with yield reductions of 75 per cent and even complete loss in yield and eventual death. In badly affected areas, smallholders have lost up to 100 per cent of their Napier grass crop and are then forced to sell their animals.

Between 2007 and 2010, an Association for Strengthening Agricultural Research in Eastern and Central Africa (ASARECA)-funded project worked to reduce the impact of smut and stunt by raising awareness of the diseases and providing information on how to manage them. ILRI, in partnership with KARI, icipe, Rothamsted Research, Tanzania’s National Biological Control Program and Uganda’s National Livestock Research Institute, developed improved management practices to reduce the incidence and spread in farmers’ fields. For both diseases, digging up infected

Despite the success of Kakamega I and Kakamega II, some major hurdles remain. plants and replacing them with healthy canes is the best strategy. Smut infected plants should be burnt to kill the fungus. During this period, ILRI provided KARI with a large pool of Napier grass germplasm from the forage genebank, developed an early screening test for smut, and provided training to KARI scientists on the technology - essential when looking for resistant plants - and on field diagnosis of the disease.

Despite the success of Kakamega I and Kakamega II, some major hurdles remain. One is the danger posed by relying on just two varieties which are clonally propagated, meaning that the new plants are genetically identical to the parent. This means the chances of the resistance to smut being broken down are high. KARI scientists have already begun to screen germplasm from more than 50 Napier grass accessions to select further resistant varieties. The aim is to increase the number of varieties that can be distributed and identify plants that combine smut-resistance and high yields. With feedback from farmers that Kakamega I and Kakamega II aren’t quite as productive as other local Napier varieties, in August 2012 ILRI exchanged resistant lines with the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa), which has a Napier grass breeding programme with highly productive lines. Through cross-breeding, Brazilian researchers are working to develop lines with better agronomic and nutritional value as well as disease resistance. h This article was taken from: European Initiative for Agricultural Research for Development (EIARD)

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FRUIT FARMING In eastern Uganda, farmers never knew the value of their mangoes.

Major corporations are increasingly working to source products from smallholder farmers in developing countries. The report cites Project Nurture, a partnership with TechnoServe, the Coca-Cola Company and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation that aims to double the fruit incomes of more than 50,000 small-scale mango and passion fruit farmers in Kenya and Uganda.

Nurturing new opportunities for fruit farmers

T

HE COCA-COLA Company wanted to sell juice processed from local passion fruit and mangoes in East Africa. But in order to obtain the necessary fruit from 50,000 small farmers the company, its local bottler Coca-Cola Sabco, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation had to invest US$11.5mn in supplier development. The resulting Project Nurture was undertaken by TechnoServe, a Washington-based non-profit group that provided the knowledge and skills to develop the fruit supply. Simon Winter, a senior vice-president at TechnoServe, said the group provided experts in agronomy and extension work, who helped farmers in grafting and pest control. It also helped organise farmers into groups, develop a complementary premium market in fresh fruit, and teach business and financial skills. In addition it helped processors, who invested in equipment to raise quality to Coca-Cola standards.

Passion fruit has quick financial returns for both the domestic and export markets. Groundwork for thriving sustainable industry Since launching in 2010, the programme has laid the groundwork for a thriving, sustainable industry that can help farming families lift themselves out of poverty. TechnoServe advisors are helping farmers to increase their productivity and create new market opportunities for their fruit. This work begins with forming or strengthening farmer business groups, which allow dozens of farmers to sell their fruit collectively and improve their bargaining power. Through the business groups, TechnoServe facilitates training sessions for farmers on key skills. Many of these trainings take place on demo plots, where farmers receive hands-on experience in preparing the land, planting trees or vines, controlling pests and diseases, managing the soil and harvesting the fruit. TechnoServe advisors also provide business training for the farmer business groups so that they can interact with buyers as equals and create more income for their members.

18 African Farming - March/April 2014

At the same time, TechnoServe is analysing the market opportunities for mango and passion fruit and helping to build relationships between buyers and farmer groups. Most of the fruit in Kenya and Uganda is sold in local markets, but processors and export markets represent key opportunities for growth. Passion fruit has quick financial returns for both the domestic and export markets because it takes only one year for the crop to mature. Better access to credit for farmers Through Project Nurture, TechnoServe is working with financial institutions to offer better access to credit for farmers. These loans can help smallholders invest in their farms and take advantage of a market opportunity for their fruit. For some farmers, this means introducing a new crop. For others, it means finding new value in a product they had taken for granted. In eastern Uganda, for example, buyers always considered the local variety of mango, the Sena, to be too low-quality for pulping and juicing. As a result, farmers never cultivated mangoes as a cash crop. “We never knew the value of our mangoes,” said Sam Koole, chairman of the newly formed Kainja Mango Farmers Association. “There was never a market for them, so we would just let them fall down on their own. The children would eat a few, and the rest were left to rot.” TechnoServe helped demonstrate to buyers that the Sena, in fact, produced sweet-tasting juice with a rich colour. One major buyer invested in a new piece of equipment to process the Sena variety. At the same time, TechnoServe advisors helped farmers in the area to improve the quality of their production. With a market now available for their mangoes, the farmers discovered a new source of income – and a new investment for their future. “Many farmers just didn’t believe it was possible to all of a sudden sell their mangoes,” Sam said. “It wasn’t until they actually saw, with their own eyes, the people coming here to buy all our mangoes that they started believing. Now, instead of felling the trees for firewood, they are planting new ones. I’ve planted 10 already.” h

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RICE

Rice has become a staple food in Nigeria. Every household both rich and poor consumes a great quantity of rice every day. Of the total projected population figure of 160mn, about 70 per cent feed on rice.

Nigeria’s plans for self-sufficiency

T

HE MINISTER OF agriculture, Dr Adewunmi Adesina has re-stated the Federal Government plan to make Nigeria self-sufficient in rice production in the next four years. “If you go to Sokoto or to Kebbi, Kano, Katsina, Niger, Kogi, Ofada rice in Ogun State, down to Abakaliki and to the Niger Delta, we have upland rice, lowland rice, Fadama rice, all types of rice that can be grown here, yet we are buying rice.” Challenges in Nigeria’s rice production Some of the issues include high input costs like cost of credit, and imported equipment, agrochemicals due to taxes (legal and illegal), tariffs and duties. There is also the problem of policy instability (ban, unban, tariffs) that makes decision-making and planning highly uncertain and puts investments at great risk. Other unattractive conditions include a low technology base (mechanisation), decaying infrastructure, high interest rates, weak institutions (such as poorly-funded research institutes, public extension system, and seeds certification), corruptionridden fertiliser distribution system and low public sector investments in agriculture. The rice farmers have been frustrated with the scarcity and high input costs. This has led to farmers not using inputs such as fertilisers and other agrochemicals and those who use them use sub–optimal proportions of the inputs resulting in low and poor quality yields. A poor road network has made it difficult for the conveyance of paddy to the mills or markets. All these combine with on-farm constraints to make rice production in Nigeria uncompetitive.

We want to protect those that are investing in rice production in the country. Federal Government’s policy on rice project According to Adesina, President Jonathan’s administration is working hard to reverse the negative trend of importation by putting in place mechanisms that will discourage imports of rice and boost local production of the commodity. He said, “That is why the President decided that we should have a self-sufficiency food plan, such as the rice transformation strategy, to make Nigeria self sufficient in rice by 2015. “There are three things we have to do. First is to produce more paddy rice, second is to be able to mill that rice at an industrial quality grade to ably substitute the rice we are importing and thirdly, we must be able to protect our investors. “So what we did as soon as I started this job was to scout for investors for rice. We brought in Dominion Farms, the largest American rice farm in Kenya. Today, they are investing US$40mn on a 30,000 ha area with the TY Danjuma Group in Taraba state. In 18 months, that rice farm will produce 15 per cent of all the rice we are importing into Nigeria and will be the largest rice farm 20 African Farming - March/April 2014

Nigeria 'to be self-sufficient in rice production by 2015'.

in Africa. We have also sent 50 young graduates from Taraba state to Kenya to be trained in commercial rice farming. “We want to protect those that are investing in rice production in the country; we have every natural endowment to be a major exporter of rice. And within 12 months of launching that policy by the President, 14 large scale integrated rice mills sprang up with total capacity of 240,000mt. 2015 ban on rice importation According to the government, the country must become selfsufficient in rice in a manner that expands the agricultural sector and creates jobs. Therefore it is going ahead to ensure the ban on rice imports as from 2015, at which time the nation would have attained self-sufficiency in rice production in line with the Rice Implementation Action Plan. In implementing this plan, the government said it will be on Public Private Partnership bases, which will be the thrust of the sustainability and success of the policy. It is one of the good things that can happen to this country because the policy will generate more employment opportunities. The federal government recently funded the establishment of about 13 mills with a combined capacity of 240,000 across the country. The government is willing and capable to assist prospective investors in the area of production and processing of rice. The federal government has also concluded arrangements to roll out a new policy that will ensure that loans are available at single digit interest rate to farmers with effect from 2013. It is based on this decision, that the government has entered into agreement with the World Bank and AfDB to increase the production of rice in the country. A rice milling project would best be sited in these areas where rice is grown in order to reduce the cost of transportation of the paddy. To set up this project, a large space is required to dry paddy rice after harvesting. The machines required can be fabricated locally. They can also be imported from Europe and some known Asian companies that specialise in the area. Prospective investors would be given details on these machine producers and specialists.h www.africanfarming.net


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ANALYSIS

Deeply-rooted inequities facing women farmers in Africa undermine efforts to feed the continent's growing population and reduce poverty, says a joint study by the World Bank and The ONE Campaign.

Closing Africa’s agricultural gender gap Providing women farmers in Africa with equal access to productive resources could increase farm yields by as much as 20 per cent. Photo: Oxfam.

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XAMINING PRODUCTION DISPARITIES between male and female farmers in Ethiopia, Malawi, Niger, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda, the report stated closing Africa's agricultural gender gap will boost household incomes and food security. "By spearheading proven, effective policies that target the needs of female farmers - such as strengthening land rights governments can help farming families tackle the low-productivity traps that entrench poverty and prevent millions of farmers from leading decent lives,� said World Bank vice president for Africa Makhtar Diop. Though nearly half of Africa's agricultural workers are women, their per-hectare productivity is significantly lower, in part, because they lack equal access to fertiliser, labour and training. "We ignore this gender gap at our peril and ultimately at great social and economic cost," said ONE Africa director Sipho Moyo. "If governments and partners invest in agriculture and, in particular, its women farmers today, they can be assured of a legacy of greater equality and boundless opportunity that will benefit Africans for generations to come and may usher the beginning of the end of aid dependence for our people.� With two-thirds of Africans depending on farming for their livelihoods, the report said giving women equal access to productive resources could increase farm yields by as much as 20 per cent on the world's most food-insecure continent. Despite a 4.8 per cent increase in Gross Domestic Product between 2000 and 2010, the Food and Agriculture Organization said agricultural production has grown less than one-per cent per year. The FAO said poor overall agricultural productivity, low incomes in rural areas, and high rates of malnutrition overwhelm better varieties of bananas in eastern and central Africa and higher-yielding maize as well as increased production of cotton, tea, and flowers. "By tackling the low productivity that ails African agriculture, we can help unleash the potential of the farm economy to be a major driver of economic growth, providing jobs as well as food, income and nutrition security," Diop said. "Through concerted action, we can make tangible improvements in the lives of African farmers, women and men alike," Diop added. Female farmers tend to live in smaller households with fewer

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Through concerted action, we can make tangible improvements in the lives of African farmers, women and men alike. men, possibly because of widowhood, migration or divorce. So women farmers across Ethiopia, Malawi, northern Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda have fewer family members to help out in the fields and at home. When they do hire male labourers, those workers tend to generate far lower returns than they do for male farmers. The report suggests that may be because women are not able to pay as much for the best workers, that men work harder for a male supervisor, and/or that women may not be able to supervise those labourers as effectively because they are also performing household roles not shared by men. The World Bank and The ONE Campaign prescribe stronger women's land rights, improved access to hired labour, and better access to tools and equipment that reduce the need for additional labour. Providing community-based childcare, encouraging women to use better fertiliser and seeds, promoting higher-value cash crops, and boosting women's access to training and technology will also help narrow the agricultural gender gap. One example is the Tufts and Oxford University's Project Alphabetisation de Base par Cellulaire - or Project ABC - which found that cheap, shared mobile phones and proper instruction can transform the lives of women farmers by improving access to realtime information on markets, pricing, agronomy and weather. Both female and male participants in the project considerably improved their literacy and maths skills, with women farmers driving production increases as high as eight per cent compared with nonABC households, in part by diversifying with cash crops such as peanuts and okra. "The continent still faces major challenges including food and nutrition, insecurity, unemployment, particularly of youth and women," said African Union commissioner for rural economy and agriculture Tumsiime Rhoda Peace. "Africa's agriculture can and should significantly contribute to addressing these challenges," Peace added. h African Farming - March/April 2014 21


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PEST CONTROL Tim Guest takes a look at some of the diseases afflicting African livestock and some of the measures used to control them.

Beasts of the field poor beasts A chicken showing classical head drooping sympotms of Newcastle Disease. (Source: www.chrisgoldenresearch.com)

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ORE THAN 300MN of the poorest people in Africa and its island states depend on livestock for a range of essential foods and other resources in their everyday lives. But in a land where diseases of the human population are many, so too are the diseases of livestock, with losses in sub-Saharan Africa estimated in some circles to be greater than 20 per cent, which translates to billions of dollars in economic terms. Disease and farming methods In West Africa, livestock face a vast number of diseases, which will either lead to death or certainly reduce the productivity of an affected animal, dramatically. From gastrointestinal parasites such as tapeworms, to anthrax, bovine and caprine (eg, goats) pleuropneumonias, ectoparasites, liver flukes, any range of respiratory conditions, and notorious diseases such as trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) and Newcastle Disease (ND) in domestic fowl (which can wipe out whole flocks), Africa’s livestock – and human farming communities – face an everyday onslaught from Mother Nature. Sheep and goats, particularly the young, suffer high mortality in the region from both parasitic and microbial pathogens, although by applying relatively simple and costeffective improvements to small hold farming practices and animal hygiene and nutrition, together with the use of traditional and veterinary medicines, mortality rates can be reduced and productivity improved. The challenge, however, is an age-old one of actually convincing the farming communities to adopt new practices. Change is always a challenge…but it’s not impossible. In Uganda, for example, where more than a million households are involved in pig farming, ‘Pig Production and Marketing Uganda’ held a two-day seminar in February this year in best practice methods of pig farming attended by more than 50 regional pig farmers. With serious disease challenges including high mortality due to frequent outbreaks of African Swine Fever and Foot and Mouth Disease, as well as parasitic diseases delivering incapacitating and chronic illnesses if left untreated,

22 African Farming - March/April 2014

the knowledge transfer delivered by the event gave insights into pig nutrition, farm management and housing, and pig health and zoonoses, that would help farmers improve all aspects of their farming lives. Details on the life cycle the pork tapeworm (Taenia solium), proved a revelation to the audience, most of whom wrongly believed that epilepsy was a direct result of eating undercooked pork contaminated with pork tapeworm cysts. With greater understanding of this and other diseases the group were reported to have come away with a new-found desire to change or introduce new farming practices that would help reduce the numbers of diseased animals and improve their overall farming productivity. Such endeavours at a local level are admirable and much needed. At a global political level organisations such as: the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), the African Union (AU) InterAfrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations and the World Health Organization (WHO), are all playing key roles in animal disease monitoring and control across Africa.

Many diseases can and are being prevented through the use of vaccinations. Vaccination – needs funding Many diseases can and are being prevented through the use of vaccinations, but a limited availability and inadequate vaccine distribution systems have added to a situation where mortality rates in some livestock groups have increased beyond 25 per cent in many African regions. For example, the most destructive viral disease in small ruminants, Peste des petits ruminants (PPR), and ND are just two which have been neglected in the vaccination stakes, which is even more frustrating when effective vaccines for these diseases exist – a PPR vaccine can actually prevent infection, and confers life-long

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PEST CONTROL

Disease education at a local level. Chris Golden of Harvard University conducts a community meeting in Madagascar teaching about Newcastle Disease, symptoms, methods of transfer and means of prevention.

immunity, which is critical at a time when the disease is spreading northwards and may eventually even threaten southern Europe, if not checked. PPR vaccination programmes in recent years have seen more than 10mn animals treated in Kenya at a total cost of US$16.5mn, with many more vaccinated in northern Uganda and Somalia where PPR has been advancing at an alarming pace. Sheep and goats in Tanzania, Ethiopia and Morocco have also been diagnosed with the disease. Considering that some vaccinations are even produced by laboratories in Africa, though often in small quantities constrained by lack of investment and out of date scientific/production equipment, it is clearly time that regional inward investment in such laboratories improved. Labs in Botswana, Cameroon, Niger, Mali, Senegal, Nigeria, Morocco, Chad, Kenya and Ethiopia, for example, now have seed stock for the PPR vaccine and are producing it at increasing rates, but support is vital. The tsetse menace Trypanosomiasis is known locally as nagana, and is caused by the tsetse fly’s transmission of the disease, and affects cattle and humans in many regions particularly of Western Africa. In Nigeria, for example, where herdsmen and their families often move from place to place in search of improved pasture and water sources, nagana is a serious scourge. In the face of poor medical and veterinary support and expensive veterinary drugs too costly for the average herdsman to afford, pest and disease control is sometimes left to the traditional beliefs of the herdsmen, often with poor outcomes. However, a team from the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE), have given recent hope in the fight against the tsetse fly. In a lecture at the Harvard University Center for the

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Environment, ICIPE director general, Christian Borgemeister, announced that he and his colleagues had devised two new ways of dealing with the tsetse fly. The first he called the ‘NGU trap’, which uses both olfactory (cow urine and acetone) and visual stimulae to attract the flies, which are captured in inside a cloth funnel, where they perish in the sun. To rid a whole square kilometre of tsetse flies just four NGU traps are needed. With each costing around US$10, the use of such traps in combating this scourge is extremely viable. The second system, the ‘Waterbuck Repellant Blend’ is an spray to cover livestock, which stops the flies from landing on cattle, therefore removing their chance to spread the disease. But as in all things, partnerships and funding will prove instrumental in getting such approaches adopted quickly. A final word While this article cannot possibly address all the diseases of livestock in Africa and their respective control methods, the likes of Contagious Caprine Pleuropneumonia (CCPP) and Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia (CBPP), should be mentioned. CCPP has been described by some as the most serious infectious disease of goats in East Africa. However, vaccination in combination with antibiotic treatment is proving the most effective way of controlling the disease. But although an effective CCPP vaccine exists, a lack of diagnostic capabilities and limited vaccine production are hindering its treatment. CBPP is one of the most serious contagious diseases of cattle and water buffalo in which the affected animals suffer acute respiratory distress resulting from lesions of pleurisy and pneumonia. It’s a serious trans-boundary animal disease and vaccination is only one part of a complex and traumatic control regime which may rely on a combination of methods including: slaughter, movement control, antibiotics and vaccination. What is clear is that the scientific knowledge now exists to beat many of the horrendous diseases which have decimated African livestock and agriculture for years. What seems to be lacking are the funds and coordination at local and regional levels where feet on the ground could produce and administer the treatments and vaccinations if given the right support and chance. h Sources: 1. The African Union – Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) 2. Pan-African Animal Health Yearbook 3. Bulletin of Animal Health and Production in Africa 4. Africa Animal resources Newsletter 5. World Health Organization 6. Harvard University Center for the Environment

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IRRIGATION

Dr Terry Mabbett looks at some of the different components of a sprinkler irrigation system.

Components of a sprinkler irrigation system

The sprinkler head should distribute water uniformly over the field without causing runoff or excessive loss of irrigation water due to deep percolation through the soil profile.

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HERE ARE NO secrets around sprinkler irrigation systems. Water is simply propelled into the air under pressure through narrow apertures called orifices. The water breaks up further into droplets which fall onto the surface of the ground like rainfall, although clearly in a more contrived man-made pattern. As such the crop is treated to the effects and benefits of simulated natural rainfall. Sprinkler irrigation is essentially a coarse spray of large droplets generated and delivered by the flow of water pumped under pressure through small orifices or nozzles. With careful selection of nozzle size and profile, together with operating pressure and spacing of the sprinklers, the amount of irrigation water required to refill the crop root zone can be evenly applied and at a rate required to suit the rate of water infiltration down through the particular soil profile. Sprinkler systems are generally classified into the following two main types: The rotating head or revolving sprinkler system This arrangement comprises small size nozzles or jets which are located and fixed on riser pipes at uniform intervals along the length of the lateral pipes which are usually laid on the ground surface. The nozzles can also be mounted on posts above the crop for rotation through an angle of 90째 to irrigate a rectangular strip of crop. A small hammer activated by the thrust of water striking against a vane connected to it is the most frequently used device to rotate the sprinkler heads. The perforated pipe system Drilled holes or fitted nozzles are positioned along the pipe length through which water is sprayed out under pressure. This system is usually designed for and used in relatively low pressure (1 kg/sq cm) systems. Application rate varies from 1.25 to 5 cm per hour depending on the pressure and hole/nozzle spacing employed. Based on their portability, sprinkler systems are classified into the following types:

24 African Farming - March/April 2014

[With sprinkler irrigation] the crop is treated to the effects and benefits of simulated natural rainfall. (i) Portable system: Entirely portable with movable main lines, laterals and pumping plant (ii) Semi portable system: Very similar to a portable system except for a fixed water source and pumping plant. (iii) Semi permanent system: Possesses portable lateral lines, permanent main lines and sub mains and a fixed (stationery) water source and pumping plant. (iv) Solid set system: Has enough laterals to eliminate need for movement. The laterals are positioned in the field early in the crop season and remain there for the duration. (v) Fully permanent system: Consists of permanently laid mains, sub mains and laterals and a stationery water source and pumping plant. Component parts of the sprinkler irrigation system Pumping unit: Sprinkler systems distribute irrigation by spraying the water, pumped under pressure, as droplets over the fields. Pressure thus created forces the water through perforations or nozzles (the sprinklers) in pipelines to generate a spray. A high speed centrifugal or turbine pump is typically used. Centrifugal pumps are the logical choice when distance from the pump inlet to the water surface is less than eight metres. A turbine pump is the most appropriate choice when pumping water from deep wells or over a distance exceeding eight metres. The driving unit may be either an electric motor or an internal combustion engine. Tubings: Tubings consist of mainline, sub-mains and laterals. The main line carries the water supply from source and distributes it to the sub-mains. Sub-mains subsequently convey water to the laterals which in turn supply water to the sprinklers.

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Water is simply propelled into the air under pressure through narrow apertures called orifices.

Aluminium or PVC pipes are generally used for portable systems, while steel pipes are more commonly employed for centre-pivot laterals. PVC and wrapped steel are usually used for buried laterals and main lines. Pipe couplers: Couplers which connect two pipes should allow quick and easy connection and disconnection. In essence a coupler should provide: (a) A reusable and flexible connection. (b) A tight connection and fit with no leakage at the join. (c) Provide simple and easy coupling and uncoupling. (d) Be inherently light, non-corrosive and durable. Irrigation sprinkler heads: The sprinkler head should distribute water uniformly over the field without causing runoff or excessive loss of irrigation water due to deep percolation through the soil profile. The two main types of sprinklers generally available to users are the rotating or fixed head type of sprinkler. Rotating types of sprinkler can be adapted for a wide range of sprinkler spacing and a correspondingly wide spectrum of irrigation application rates. Rotating type sprinklers are effective under pressure range of 10 to 70 metres head at the sprinkler. Pressures ranging from 16 to 40 metres head are considered the most practical for most farmers. Fixed head sprinklers are commonly used to irrigate small plots and backyards. Perforated lateral lines are sometimes used as sprinklers. They require less pressure than rotating sprinklers. Fixed heads will deliver more water per unit area than will rotating sprinklers and therefore may be the preferred choice for soils with very high intake rate. Fittings and accessories: A wide range of essential fittings and accessories are available to increase the accuracy and sophistication of the basic sprinkler irrigation system. Water meters: Used to measure the volume of water delivered by the system and absolutely necessary to ensure the required quantity of water is being delivered Flanges, couplings and nipples: These are used to secure proper connection of the distribution system to the pump to ensure the correct level of suction and water delivery. The pressure gauge: Absolutely essential if you want to know whether the sprinkler system is working under the desired pressure required to ensure uniformity of application. Bend, tees, reducers, elbows, hydrants, butterfly valve and plugs. Fertiliser applicators: This accessory allows the operator to inject soluble fertilisers and plant nutrients and deliver them in solution to the crop. Such a set up and system is commonly called fertigation. The required equipment is relatively economic to purchase and operate and will typically comprise a sealed fertiliser tank with the required tubings and connections. A venturi injector can be situated in the main line to create the differential pressure suction that allows the chemical solution to flow in the main water line. h 26 African Farming - March/April 2014

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SPRINKLER IRRIGATION

Developed in Nelspruit, the Floppy Sprinkler is a unique South African product which has been patented in 34 countries.

Rain on demand

The Floppy Sprinkler irrigation system has been used successfully on banana plantations in Mozambique and Angola.

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HIS REVOLUTIONARY DESIGN leads to substantial water and energy savings and makes the Floppy Sprinkler one of the most efficient sprinklers available on the market today. This design has dramatically challenged conventional irrigation systems, with water savings of 29 per cent and yield increases of up to 40 per cent. The system was independently tested by the SA Institute for Agricultural Engineering, confirming dramatic water and energy savings compared to conventional irrigation systems. Sustainability in agricultural production Plants produce biomass or organic material through the process of photosynthesis. In the farming operation some of this organic material is harvested or consumed by animals. For a farming operation to be sustainable the remainder of the organic material must be aerobically recycled within the soil on which it was grown. More importantly, in sustainable or biological farming the best source of organic material and carbon is heavy root growth. So called modern agriculture paid very little attention to heavy root growth over the past 50 years. As Gene Poirot so aptly put it, nature creates life using air, water, sunshine and earth minerals. What is even more astounding is the fact that a typical crop of maize – one of the simpler monocot grasses – is 95 per cent air, water and sunshine, and only five per cent earth minerals. Nature furnishes air, water and sunshine with little or no variance, apparently leaving the farmer to concentrate most of his management capabilities on five per cent of the nutrient traffic. Yet it stands to reason that we need to deal with function and nutrition in the 95 per cent range, where results can be proportionally better than in the five per cent range. www.africanfarming.net

In sustainable or biological farming the best source of organic material and carbon is heavy root growth. At present there is rapid technological innovation in the fields of soil mineralisation, (to obtain heavy root growth) as well as foliar fertilisation (to manage the 95 per cent range). The Floppy Sprinkler Solid Set Irrigation layout is the only irrigation system available that provides the farmer with an all-in-one tool to take full advantage of these technological innovations. Water for agriculture World demand for water doubles every 21 years but the volume available is the same as it was in Roman times. Urban growth, intensive agricultural production and environmental concerns exert increasing demands for available water, resulting in increased awareness of the need to manage irrigation correctly. Floppy Sprinkler has set itself the aim of keeping abreast with dynamic global scientific technologies and has successful systems running in 25 countries around the world. The unique design allows for different installation options as required by the crop: short/tall risers as well as the overhead cable system, ideal for vegetables, lucerne and other crops where tillage practises favour an overhead system. The Floppy Sprinkler wets the total root area of a plant. This eliminates localised development of roots and encourages large root zones, giving a plant a good anchor and larger area for water and nutrient absorption. Therefore ancillary rainfall is absorbed more effectively. Yield increases of between 15 and 20 per cent on sugar cane are common. African Farming - March/April 2014 27


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SPRINKLER IRRIGATION

Maintenance The Floppy Sprinkler has no moving and wearing parts and therefore requires little or no maintenance. The sprinkler nozzle is made of silicone and silt laden water has no effect on it. Large flow paths ensure easy filtration, and no chemicals are needed to flush the system resulting in further maintenance savings. It is manufactured from plastic and silicone, which has no scrap value. The first Floppy system was installed in 1987 and is still in mint working condition. Virtually no maintenance has been required. With the Floppy solid set system, irrigation can be accurately managed, eliminating water stress in the crop. Irrigating potatoes in the Limpopo project.

The unique design allows for different installation options as required by the crop. Other advantages • The Floppy Sprinkler makes uniform medium-sized droplets with no mist formation. It is therefore ideal in high wind areas. • It is a low pressure sprinkler, operating from as low as two bar pressure, which is 42 per cent less pressure needed than a standard 3.5 bar impact sprayer. • Due to lower operating pressures and water saving, substantial energy savings are possible. • The solid set Floppy system can save up to 75 per cent in labour costs - no pipes are moved around, therefore making it easier to manage.

28 African Farming - March/April 2014

• This was the first sprinkler in the world with a built-in large flow path flow controller. This ensures super accurate irrigation even on slopes – so accurate that fertigation, chemigation and foliar feeding (important in biological farming) can be applied through the system. • The design and unique features result in major installation cost savings. Lower pressures and the absence of reactionary forces allow the use of light weight risers. Compared to conventional impact systems, Floppy Sprinkler offers lower water consumption, lower labour costs and lower maintenance costs with a dramatic increase in yield, also on marginal, rocky or sandy soils. h www.floppysprinkler.com.

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EQUIPMENT

Same Deutz-Fahr has announced the return on the African markets of its most recognised range: Explorer Special.

The return of the Special

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OLD IN THOUSANDS of units all over the world until 2010, many of them are still working in the fields demonstrating their high reliability: now Sam Deutz-Fahr has restarted the production of this successful range in its main plant in Treviglio, Italy. The Explorer Special is strong and simple at the same time and this is underlined by its essential shape, and yet is complemented by advanced features that make it the faithful workhorse for any farmer that needs a multi-purpose tractor of 70-100 Hp, 2WD or 4WD: • Under the bonnet there is the well-proven SDF 1000.4 engine, both natural and turbo, with a high pressure independent single cylinder pump available in the power ratings 75, 85 and 95 Hp (available also in the Tier II version 80, 90 and 100 Hp). This engine guarantees high performance and low operating costs; • The gearbox and mechanical shuttle are fully synchronised; the standard configuration is with four gears and three ranges (12+12); the creeper version fits the 16+16 gearbox and the 40 kph version is also available with 20+20 gearbox; the final reductions are epicyclical, assuring more durability; • The differential is 100 per cent lockable and brakes are hydrostatically operated with oil bath discs on all four wheels; PTO 540-1000 rpm is fully independent with wet clutch and it is available also the ground speed PTO; • Hydraulics is at the top of category, up to 56 litres per minute, and the steering system has an independent pump; rear lift can reach a capacity of 4,700 kg; • The layout of the operator area has been studied to guarantee an easy-to-use environment so all commands are side-mounted and intuitive; • Available as factory-fitted with the most common tyre combinations up to 18,4R34 for heavy duty soil preparation or narrow tyres 13,6R38 on the rear for light row-cropping. “We are proud to re-launch Explorer Special in the African continent” said Marco Polastri, export manager at Same Deutz-Fahr. “It represents a concrete step in bringing our company closer to the needs of African farmers and to our distributors. Alot of effort has been made internally and together with our suppliers in order to re-start this production: we strongly believe that farmers will appreciate the high quality of our Explorer Special tractors”. The first launch for the public in the African continent will be at the NAMPO exhibition in Bothaville, South Africa from 13th-16th May: this will be the occasion to see the new products in person. Local distributors will then start to promote Explorer Special in their respective countries. Explorer Special is part of what is called by Same the “Overseas Range”, a line of products dedicated to markets such as Africa, requesting tractors that are easy to operate, highly reliable and can guarantee high productivity. This range includes tractors from 50 to 270 Hp and the mechanical ranges Same 55-60, Tiger 50-80 Hp, Explorer 80-100 Hp, Laser 100-170 Hp; the Explorer3e 90-115 Hp range which is available both as mechanical and powershift; the powershift

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The Explorer Special.

ranges Iron 110-190 Hp, Iron3 190-220 Hp and Diamond 270 Hp; lastly, the range is completed by the orchard tractors Frutteto3 Classic 60-100 Hp. h

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MECHANISATION

African Farming recently talked to Diego H de la Calle, Africa business director for Case IH and New Holland Agriculture, and discussed the role of mechanisation in Africa.

Mechanisation plays a key role The TD series tractors are very successful and make a big contribution to the brand’s 23.3 per cent share of the overall tractor market.

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OW WOULD YOU describe the African Agriculture market in 2013? Have you seen a growth in business in the region, and to what do you attribute it? Last year has confirmed the trend towards an increasingly widespread adoption of western type farming practices and mechanisation. World population is growing and changing diets due to rising living standards; this process is happening in Africa as well… As the OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook 2012-2022 report points out, developing countries are expected to account for 80 per cent of the growth in global meat production and most of world exports of coarse grains, rice, oilseeds, sugar, beef, poultry among others. This presents a huge opportunity for African countries, and many of the continent’s governments are committing more resources to developing agriculture, running large-scale projects to help this process, bringing new land into cultivation and boosting productivity in existing and new farms. In a continent where agriculture employs about 60 per cent of the workforce and accounts for roughly 15 per cent of its GDP, farming has low levels of efficiency, with yields well below world averages. Sixty per cent of farmers are subsistence farmers. The introduction of modern farming practices and effective mechanisation has the potential to dramatically raise productivity and, where African agriculture has begun a 30 African Farming - March/April 2014

shift in this direction with the support of its governments, it has been attracting greater investments from the private sector. How do you see the trend for mechanisation growth in the area, and how are Case IH and New Holland Agriculture able to meet this growing demand? How do you support your customers in the region?

The pursuit of higher productivity and the shift from subsistence farming to commercial agriculture and the large-scale farming projects aiming to bring new land into cultivation and introducing more efficient farming practices have driven the growth in the equipment market. This process has very specific requirements, from simple, robust tractors that are easy to use and service to the high-horsepower models bristling with productivity-boosting features, as well as a wide range of baling and harvesting equipment. This trend is set to continue as African countries strive to develop this sector in order to meet the growing demand for agricultural commodities. Industry volumes have increased for tractors, especially in the segment below 75 hp, combine harvesters and hay and forage equipment. Case IH and New Holland Agriculture have been at the forefront of the mechanisation process, gaining an outstanding leadership in these markets. In fact, one out of every three tractors and more than 40 per cent of combines sold in Africa in

Many of the continent’s governments are committing more resources to developing agriculture. 2013 were either Case IH or New Holland. Sales of small balers and self-propelled windrowers have also dramatically increased for both brands. Case IH and New Holland Agriculture are ideally placed to meet the growing demand and specific requirements of the African markets, with their wide product offering that includes entry-level, simple to use and to maintain equipment for the small farmer to the latest technologies and high-productivity machines for the big farming businesses, as well as specialist machines such as Case IH’s sugar cane harvesters and cotton pickers or New Holland’s grape and olive harvesters. We are also able to support efficient farming practices with our seeding and tilling equipment. Most importantly, we are present in 39 countries on the continent, covering 97 per cent of the agricultural areas, through solid, highly professional distributors and their networks that count more than 250 dealerships. This means that we are able to provide qualified sales advice as well as effective and fast parts and technical support. In addition, we have a training centre in Johannesburg to provide technical and www.africanfarming.net


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S06 AF March April 2014 Same Deutz - Percision Agriculture - Mechanisatio_Layout 1 4/11/2014 12:26 PM Page 32

MECHANISATION Diego H de la Calle, Africa business director for Case IH and New Holland Agriculture

The Maganum tractor range has 30 per cent market share in its horse power segment in the region.

operator training support throughout the continent. And, last but not least, we have the backing of CNH Industrial and we can rely on the use of Iveco facilities, for example to add sales outlets or parts depots to our network. What role does mechanisation play in the success of the agriculture business and how do you see the role of equipment manufacturers in this?

Farmers around the world share the same fundamental challenge that every business does: maximise productivity, minimise costs and plan for future development. In other words, do more with less. And preserve natural resources to sustain future growth. Mechanisation has a key role to play in helping farmers build a sustainable business for themselves. Combined with modern farming techniques, mechanisation enables farmers to get the most from their resources. With mechanisation they can optimise the use of land, water, seeding, planting and fertiliser, increasing their land’s yield and the quality of their harvest; they can minimise losses and waste; and do it all in less time. As an agricultural equipment manufacturer, we believe we have a role to play in supporting local farming communities through a smooth transition to a sustainable development while protecting natural resources for future generations. It is our role to explore the ways technology and equipment can help them farm efficiently; to develop the products and services they need at the stage of mechanisation they have reached and in view of their financial resources. Some will need very simple equipment with low costs of operation and high efficiency, others will need the most powerful, high capacity, high productivity equipment; they will need financing and support packages that match their cash flow and business cycle, training to learn how to operate their equipment most efficiently. We believe that our role as manufacturer is to be alongside farmers and help them as

32 African Farming - March/April 2014

they progress in mechanising and developing their business with comprehensive, all-round support. How important is the Africa region for your business as a global leader in agriculture machinery? Which are your most popular machines in the region and why?

The African markets are very important for us and, with the drive for mechanisation, the demand for equipment is set to grow fast in the years to come. Both Case IH and New Holland are ideally placed to meet this demand with the right products and have the professional, widespread networks to support customers throughout the territory. Both brands do very well with the full line of products that we sell in the region. If I had to single out some best sellers, for Case IH I would say the Axial-Flow rotary combines, which have earned a leading position with close to 50 per cent share of the rotary combine harvester market and the Magnum tractor range with 30 per cent market share in its horse power segment. Also, Case IH sugarcane harvesters are very popular in the sugar and ethanol industries in Zimbabwe, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Sudan, as are its cotton pickers in the Sudan. For New Holland Agriculture, the TC combine harvesters are successfully meeting the strong demand for entry level, simple to use and to maintain models, while the flagship, high capacity combines are very popular with the agricultural operations looking for advanced technologies to achieve the highest levels of productivity. The TD series and TT series tractors are also very successful and make a big contribution to the brand’s 23.3 per cent share of the overall tractor market. Sales of New Holland round balers and small balers, which had been steadily increasing, last year leaped, almost doubling. New Holland’s specialty products have also a strong reputation: its grape harvesters in South Africa and in the Maghreb countries, for example, complemented by its specialty

orchard tractors such as the T4 F/N/V; or its olive harvesters, which are gaining growing popularity and leading the sector’s mechanization process in these countries. Please comment on the potential for growth - in which markets and segments do you see the greatest potential?

On the one hand, as governments and private investors continue to support the shift away from subsistence farming, the demand for simple, easy to use and to maintain tractors, mainly below 75hp, combines, balers and windrowers is set to increase. On the other hand, in countries such as South Africa, Zimbabwe and Kenya, where there are big farmers and large scale farming operations relying on the most advanced technologies and high capacity, high productivity equipment, we see a demand for our flagship products and precision farming technologies that we expect to continue. What are the company’s future plans for further development of the ag business in Africa for 2014? Any major strategies to be highlighted? Do you have any plans to expand/develop/change your distribution network in Africa?

We are ready to meet the growing demand in these countries. We will continue investing in technologies and products that match the specific needs of farmers in these markets. We plan to continue developing and expanding both the Case IH and New Holland Agriculture networks to be closer to our customers and provide them the professional support they need as mechanisation progresses. We are also setting up more spare parts depots to ensure fast and efficient parts service throughout the territory. We will continue to be at the forefront of the mechanisation process with both our brands, providing African farmers with the equipment, the training, the technical support and the services they need to raise the bar on their productivity and profitability. h

www.africanfarming.net


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EQUIPMENT Gold medal for Valtra’s 4th generation S Series

Valmont soil moisture monitor earns AE50 award

THE FOURTH GENERATION Valtra S Series has received great international attention since its introduction at last year’s Agritechnica. Most recently the model S354 has been awarded a gold medal at the Polagra Premiery Fair of Agricultural Mechanization in Poznań, Poland. This prestigious gold medal is awarded to innovative products that feature modern and state-of-the-art technology. The jury consisted of experts in agricultural science, agricultural administration and the fair organisers. The Polagra Premiery is one of the most important agricultural trade fairs in Poland and attracts more than 40,000 visitors from 16 countries. The new Valtra S Series tractor is powered by the 8.4 AWF AGCO power engine. It is Tier 4 ready, and it’s ready for any job that comes your way. The AGCO variable transmission and the twin turbo system delivers the power you need, where you need it - efficiently, cleanly and reliably. The Valtra S Series tractor is a big investment that pays a reliable return. With Valtra Technology Solutions like AgCommand, you can keep track of where your tractors are, what they are doing, and how the engine is running. So you can react fast to prevent downtime The new Valtra S Series tractor is built for a long day’s work. Put yourself in the cab and the day won’t feel so long. With the optional TwinTrac reverse drive system, you can work just as efficiently forward and reverse. This really saves your back and neck in demanding tasks like mowing, crushing or chipping. In the spacious cab, with AutoComfort 4-point suspension and the ergonomic Valtra ARM with a colour display, you can work all day and be ready for more.

VALLEY SOILPRO 100 FROM Valmont Irrigation, the manufacturer of the Valley brand of irrigation equipment, recently won an AE50 award from the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE). Deemed one of the year’s most innovative designs in engineering products for the food and agriculture industries by ASABE, Valley SoilPro 100 is an innovative, low-cost solution for developing markets and growers new to centre pivot and linear irrigation. It uses simple, reasonably-priced components to provide growers with soil moisture information, without the need for computerised pivot controls or internet access. Currently sold in China, SoilPro 100 combines a soil moisture sensor and a programmable cellular modem to monitor soil water conditions. Farmers receive SMS text messages when the sensor measures either dry or saturated conditions. Farmers new to centre pivot irrigation often request support for irrigation timing decisions, said Scott Mauseth, a product manager for Valmont Irrigation. “Scheduling irrigation is a critical skill that many growers just don’t have when they convert from flood to centre pivot and linear irrigation,” Mauseth said. “Most often the result is over watering: The SoilPro 100 bridges that gap without expecting the user to understand complex charts or graphs. Simply put, it tells them when to irrigate and when not to, easing the transition of implementing new technology.” The award is a testament to the ongoing commitment of Valmont Irrigation to develop innovative products for growers around the world. “We are pleased that the ASABE recognises the value of SoilPro 100 as an ideal solution for beginning irrigators in emerging markets,” Mauseth said.

www.africanfarming.net

African Farming - March/April 2014 33


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TILLAGE EQUIPMENT Reducing the number of cultivations needed to produce a seedbed can bring important cost savings, with yields matching or in many cases outperforming crops grown with traditional soil preparation. Michael Williams looks at some recent developments.

Growing crops with reduced cultivations An eight-row Horsch Focus TD strip-till cultivator and drill combination working in South Africa.

O

NE OF THE cost benefits of using reduced cultivations including no-till technology is a reduction in the number of tractor operations needed for crop establishment, and this brings savings in tractor costs per hectare including reduced fuel bills; labour costs are reduced and there is less wear and tear on tillage equipment. Another potential benefit is improved timeliness as reducing the soil preparation process means more of the crop can be planted at the optimum time. Other benefits may include helping to conserve soil moisture, and reducing the number of tractor operations can result in a better soil structure with less compaction. One potential disadvantage is that there is less control over weed growth, but the use of herbicide sprays can deal with most weed problems.

One potential disadvantage is that there is less control over weed growth. Increased tractor power Increased tractor power has played an important part in the development of reduced cultivation methods, allowing several different operations to be combined in one implement to achieve in a single pass what would traditionally require a number of operations. An example of this approach is the Quatro four-in-one cultivator from Sumo UK, 34 African Farming - March/April 2014

available in 4.0, 5.0 and 6.0 metres widths and with tractor recommendations ranging from 250 to 600hp. Quatro has four cultivation sections of which two, three or four can be operating depending on the type of cultivation required. There are two sets of discs, a set of subsoiling tines set at 500mm intervals plus a press roll at the rear for levelling and consolidation. Working with the two sets of discs plus the rear press is recommended for shallow, fast cultivations and working with the tines and press roll only is the arrangement for minimum surface disturbance. The depth setting for the discs adjusts hydraulically, the tines have a hydraulically operated auto-resent action and hydraulic folding provides a three metre transport width. There are between eight and 12 subsoiler tines depending on the model, and tines are carbide tipped for wear resistance. Kongskilde’s Vibroflex series offers the versatility of being able to select the best combination of cultivation units to suit a range of soil conditions. The standard version is the VF7400 series designed for shallow, high output stubble cultivation using a combination of tines, discs and a press roll. The tines are sprung to give a vibrating action designed to improve cultivating efficiency while reducing the power requirement, and the discs provide an extra chopping and mixing action. Vibroflex cultivators are available in mounted and trailed versions with widths from 2.5 to 7.0 metres. Kongskilde also offers a DeltaFlex version which replaces the spring tines with a more aggressive auto-reset leg that can penetrate to 30 cm.

Cultivator and drill combination Completing the crop establishment process in just one operation with some form of cultivator and drill combination can allow considerable time and cost savings, and reducing soil moisture losses is also a major attraction in low rainfall areas, according to Carel van Niekerk of Piket Implement. Carel’s company is based in South Africa and makes a range of farm machinery including seed drills that can be used in either no-till systems or on conventional seedbeds, but the number of notill users in South Africa is increasing rapidly, especially in low rainfall areas, he says. Using no-till methods with plenty of crop residue left on the soil surface helps to minimise soil moisture losses, allowing crops to overcome dry periods and increase yields, he said. It is not just arable farms that are switching away from traditional cultivations, as some livestock farms are also using Piket drills to produce grazing with no till. Increasing interest in strip tillage Increasing interest in strip tillage for crops such as maize and sunflowers grown in widely spaced rows is attracting more machinery manufacturers with a big batch of new cultivators. The technique is used to cultivate narrow strips of soil where the seed is sown by a drill attached behind the cultivator to complete the till-and-drill process in a single pass while leaving the soil between the strips undisturbed. Attractions include a big reduction in the time needed for crop establishment with significant savings in fuel and other costs. www.africanfarming.net


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S07 AF March April 2014 Tillage equipment_Layout 1 4/11/2014 12:42 PM Page 36

TILLAGE

Recent arrivals in the strip-till cultivator market include the Kverneland group’s Kultistrip that adjusts to prepare cultivated strips to suit row spacing from 45 to 90 cm. Each cultivation unit starts with a cutting disc plus trash wheels to clear residue from previous crops. The soil is cultivated by shares available in three versions to suit a variety of crop requirements, and the soil is then levelled and consolidated by veeshaped rollers ready for the drill. Working speeds are up to 12 kph and the options include a fertiliser placement attachment. Strip tillage leaves up to 70 per cent of the surface undisturbed, says Kverneland, and this has a number of benefits including reduced moisture loss, and the uncultivated soil provides a firm surface to carry the weight of equipment used for subsequent crop care and harvesting operations. Another potential advantage is that the areas between the cultivated strips reduce the risk of soil erosion. Another recent strip-till development is the Seedaerator cultivator drill announced last year by McConnel, a UK subsidiary of the Alamo company in America. The first production machines are available this year with a three metre working width and suitable for tractors of 160 hp plus, but additional models will follow to give a range of sizes. The first version has a choice of 600 kg or 1200 kg seed hopper capacities, and seed is sown with radar controlled metering into nine 150 mm width strips. Although only a narrow band of soil is cultivated for each crop row, it is important to have sufficient cultivation depth to break up compacted layers and allow healthy root development, and on the McConnel strip-till machine the front cultivation legs can be adjusted in 50 mm steps for working depths between 100 and 300 mm. Seed coulters are designed to work at 25 to 150 mm depth with 12 mm increments, and automatic break-back protection is standard. Kuhn is another of the recent arrivals in the strip tillage equipment market. Their Striger cultivator was announced last year, available in a rigid frame version with a

The South African-built Piket 14-row fine seed drill works in traditional seedbeds or as a no-till drill .

36 African Farming - March/April 2014

Kuhn's new Striger strip-till cultivator and drill combination can be adjusted for up to 80cm row spacing.

three metre working width or in 4.4 and 6.0m sizes with hydraulic folding. Row spacing can be adjusted between 45 and 80 cm and there is a wide choice of options to suit a range of crops. The main cultivation legs are protected by a hydraulically operated break-back action with tip pressures between 500 and 730kg to maintain the correct angle. Liquid and granular fertiliser placement kits are available. French farmers were among the first in Europe to adopt strip-tillage methods and the Duro-France company is a leading manufacturer of the special cultivation equipment. They offer a range of machines for between four and 12 rows and their midsized eight-row model complete with a precision drill needs 160 to 200 hp. The cultivation process starts with a disc that cuts through surface trash, and this is followed by a pair of angled discs that clear any remaining crop residue from a 150 mm wide strip. The strips are produced by a 15 mm wide subsoiler legs with between 100 and 250 mm working depth and equipped with either 100 or 170 mm wide wings to achieve deep cultivation with minimum surface disturbance. The Dura-France cultivators can work with most makes of precision seeds drill and they can also be equipped for either liquid or granular fertiliser placement. Reducing time and cost of crop establishment Reducing the time and cost of crop establishment plus more effective use of fertilisers are among the benefits attracting more farmers to switch to strip tillage, says Sieghard von Pannwitz, general manager of Terratill Implements based at Carletonville, South Africa. His company is the southern Africa distributor for Horsch machinery from Germany and they also specialise in precision farming technology, with most of their sales in South Africa as well as customers in Zambia and Kongo. The

Strip tillage leaves up to 70 per cent of the surface undisturbed, and this has a number of benefits. company reports increased demand for equipment that improves efficiency, and this can include GPS linked auto-steer systems and variable rate application for fertiliser and seed as well as strip-till seeding units. The Horsch strip tillage equipment sold by Terratill is the Focus TD cultivator with a seeding attachment, available in a six metre width for tractors of 240 hp plus and a 7.2 metre version needing at least 280 hp. The cultivators are equipped with 17 and 21 deep working tines respectively and the working speed is between six and 10 kph. A special feature of the Horsch fertiliser system is a choice of placement beneath the seed depth, shallow placement above the seed or a split dressing with placement above and below the seed. The new Great Plains Simba disc harrows are designed for those who need more traditional cultivation methods. The British based Simba company, now owned by Great Plains of America, has a long history of supplying cultivation equipment for use on African farms and the 4B series discs are designed for ‘challenging conditions’, the company says, and particularly for farms growing crops such as maize, sisal and sugar cane. Three models are available, all offset and with working widths from 3.41 to 5.04 metres. There are 17 discs on the smallest model, increasing to 25 on the top model, and the heavy duty construction is a special design feature indicated by the weights which are 7465 kg and 9900 kg respectively for the smallest and largest sizes. Tractor power recommendations start at 200 to 250 hp and the biggest 4B disc harrows need 300 to 450 hp. h

www.africanfarming.net


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The non-stop power of Case IH Magnum tractors proven in action in South Africa.

Big farms never rest

T

HERE'S NO DOUBT about it: running a large farm is a complex, tough job and it’s a job that must be done right. It requires a 24/7 commitment for maximum productivity and the role of agricultural equipment is consequently of capital importance. Investments in machinery are considerable and never an easy decision, given that they must provide the perfect balance between performance, maximum uptime and reliability, and minimum operating costs. This is nothing new for Dirk Fourie, a third generation grower of maize and owner of DJ Fourie Boerdery, a well-established large-scale farming business based in Schweizer Reneke in the North West Province of South Africa. “Over the years, we have gone from strength to strength and today we plant and harvest more than 18,000ha,” said Fourie. For some time, his equipment of choice has borne the distinctive red livery of Case IH. In 2011, Fourie bought forty Case IH Magnum 340 tractors: “We needed to renew our fleet with high-output tractors to carry out planting and primary tillage operations,” he explained. “We decided to purchase the Magnum tractors based on their productivity and their good value for money. Very importantly, having the service department just 20 km away from us was a remarkable advantage.” The units were delivered by Northmec, Case IH’s distributor in South Africa and a leading supplier of agricultural equipment in the country. Before his purchasing decision, Fourie had heard about the legendary reliability of Case IH tractors. After more than two years of daily operations, this has become a field proven certainty. Massive power in the toughest pulling conditions First launched back in 1987, the Magnum Series has evolved over almost 30 years to become one of the best-known ranges of tractors for the most demanding applications. Today, the Magnum Series comes in a five model line-up with rated power up to 340 hp. Equipped with a 8.7-litre common rail engine developed by sister company FPT Industrial, Magnum tractors deliver groundbreaking pulling power and torque with the highest horsepower in their class. With Engine Power Management, they deliver up to an additional 37 hp, giving more performance for transport, PTO applications and hydraulic demands. According to Arno Du Plessis, national sales manager for Northmec, Magnum tractors are a customer favourite for their power, their reliability and the good value for money. “They always make a great impression on our customers as they can easily get maximum horsepower to pull even the heaviest implement with impressive fuel economy,” said Du Plessis. The hydraulic system delivers outstanding power and precise control, with up to 274 litres per minute flow capacity and 10,200 kg lift capacity, giving the versatility to move large implements, cultivators and seeders. “These tractors work exceptionally well,” added Fourie.

www.africanfarming.net

“They seem to be the only machines with enough oil flow to run our planters’ vacuum motors for 18 hours plus per day.” Magnum tractors put their power to the ground through the full Powershift transmission with integrated automatic shift which allows seamless smooth shifting from start to 40 kph. “Magnum tractors are well suited for the needs of our farmers and for the climate here,” commented Du Plessis. “With an average rainfall of 300mm per year we have a more sandy, dry soil than other parts in the world. That’s why we usually deliver Magnum tractors with larger tyres. They also come with the best specifications and looks, so they can run bigger tillage equipment and help farmers out to the field, working early and staying later to get the job done in a short window of time.” Taking the strain out of the job Daily maintenance of Magnum Series tractors is as quick and effortless as possible. Fourie is impressed with the ease of reaching service points at ground level and the long service intervals. “We have worked for two years without any significant breakdown or downtime,” he said. “These machines just keep going without any hassle or unexpected cost implication.” With the Automatic Productivity Management, the driver can simply select the desired ground speed to get the most efficient gear ratio and engine speed combination. Magnum tractors are ideally equipped for Advanced Farming Systems. The factory-fitted AFS AccuGuide system is the auto-guidance solution that provides the ultimate level of productivity. In association with RTK correction signal, the accuracy of auto-guidance goes down to 2.5 cm. “Magnum tractors, combined with the unique AFS system, allow us to work day and night and to never worry about anything,” Fourie said. Magnum tractors offer the largest and quietest cab in their class. The key controls and functions are at the operator’s fingertips while the integrated AFS Pro 700 display allows the driver to access the operating parameters and Auto Guidance features. A suspended cab option is available for an even ride on rough terrain. Technology plays a big role in Fourie’s equipment choice, but the support he receives from the local Case IH dealership is extremely valuable too. “With such a fleet to operate, it’s important to have the dealer and the brand behind our needs,” he said. “They are so close to us and they have enough technicians available for us, 24 hours per day.” Case IH dealer is also providing complete training and competency certificates to DJ Fourie Boerdery’s operators. Since the first purchase, the company’s fleet has grown in Case IH machines and it now also includes twenty Maxxum 125 tractors, twenty JX95 tractors, two STX600 tractors and one STX550 model from the Steiger Series, four Axial-Flow 6130 combines and three PatriotM SPX3230 sprayers. “Our research of the best equipment for our farming business is continuous,” concluded Fourie. “And next time it will be Case IH again.” h

African Farming - March/April 2014 37


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Bentall Rowlands Storage Systems: Versatility and adaptability

B

ENTALL ROWLANDS STORAGE Systems Limited is a leading UK manufacturer in complete storage and processing equipment solutions for the agricultural and industrial markets. The company offers a wide range of galvanised steel silos and hoppers, water tanks, catwalks and platforms, material handling equipment, cleaning and grading and weighing and drying systems that are assembled worldwide. With more than a century of experience in the design, quality and installation of grain storage systems, Bentall Rowlands has developed new technologies that have been applied to the manufacture as well as the installation of grain storage and processing equipment. Its engineering and technical expertise combined with continued focus on

A D V E R T I S E R S

Bentall Rowlands has been a worldwide leader in the grain storage industry for nearly 50 years.

customer satisfaction places the company in a strong position to capitalise on the expanding market in storage systems. With capabilities to design, manufacture, supply, and install storage systems from an extensive range of products, it provides a comprehensive end-to-end solution which can be designed to any specific clients’ requirements. As the demand for bulk storage and handling equipment is increasing worldwide, volumes and competitive pricing

www.bentallrowlands.com

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African Farming March April 2014