Skip to main content

Mechanization of rice farming in Kenya – Mwea Irrigation scheme

Farming rice without mechanization is the peak of farm drudgery. Rice farmers deserve a break from drudgery. Mechanization of rice farming in Kenya.

Farming rice without mechanization is the peak of farm drudgery

While still celebrating the December holidays, I visited some smallholder rice farmers in the Mwea Irrigation Scheme. My take-home was that rice farmers deserve a break from drudgery. The mechanization of rice farming in Kenya should be an urgent priority.

Farmers in the Mwea Irrigation Scheme in Kirinyaga County are finalizing the harvest of paddy rice this December. I had an opportunity to visit a family friend who is a rice farmer on a three-acre piece of land. Let me tell you if you have never heard this, rice farming is really hard work. Without mechanization, rice is probably one of the most difficult crops to grow on earth.

Farmers spend many hours on the farm but very little work is done and they go home while extremely exhausted.

Also Watch: Apple farming in Kenya - Wambugu Apples

I witnessed the manual harvesting of rice. To me, it looked like a punishment that farmers have to go through to bring rice to our tables. They chop the rice stalks using a sickle, which they then transport to a clean surface for threshing. They then beat-up the straws using sticks to separate the grains. Cleaning is done by winnowing. Some farmers harvest up to five hectares manually. Imagine that!

As if the donkey-work was not enough, manual harvesting of rice also leads to a lot of grain loss due to poor threshing.

If the amount of hard work were a pricing factor, then rice would be the most expensive food on earth.

But the good news that farmers can now have access to affordable rice harvesting machines like the Massey Ferguson MF 2168 rice combine. Apart from being affordable, MF 2168 will give farmers a break from the toil and also improve efficiency by reducing grain loss. If farmers can work together, it could easy to design a mechanization strategy.

Farming rice without mechanization is the peak of farm drudgery. Rice farmers deserve a break from drudgery. Mechanization of rice farming in Kenya.

NB: Just a short story on the Origin of the name “COMBINE HARVESTERS”

Harvesting is a collection of activities. Traditionally, every activity of harvesting was done separately using a different hand tool. In the case of rice, for instance, harvesting consists of cutting using a sickle, threshing using rods, cleaning by winnowing, packaging in sacks, and transporting to the store using the human back. A combine harvester came to put together all these activities into one machine operated by one person. You no longer need a dozen of tools and people to harvest. One machine and one person are enough.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Where to get Wambugu apples and how to grow them

The story of farming Wambugu apples in Kenya People like eating apples, but in Kenya, imported apples are very expensive and farmers are now looking for an alternative to grow apples locally, and the farming of Wambugu apples has excited many farmers in Kenya and abroad. In this article, we have gathered and reviewed some information from Wambugu Apple farm as well as from some farmers who have been growing the Wambugu apple variety in Kenya. Read also:  Dairy Goat farming with Wambugu Farmer It is said that an apple a day keeps a doctor away, but what if you could venture into the business of farming apples and keep poverty away? Think about it this way: A huge percentage of apples consumed in Kenya, almost 99% are imported from South Africa, the Middle East region, and the Mediterranean countries majorly Egypt. The price of one piece of apple fruit in Kenya goes for around $ 0.5. One kilogram of the imported apples go for up to 10 dollars. The price is very inhibitive especially th

Dairy Goat farming with Wambugu Farmer

Dairy goat farming step by step by Wambugu Farmer Dairy goat farming is an upcoming lucrative agribusiness venture, not only because of the huge prices that goat milk attracts but also because of the well-known health benefits of goat milk. My name is Wambugu Farmer, and I will take you through a few outlines that I have learnt about dairy goat farming during the past few years. I am not a direct dairy goat farmer, but my parents are. I visit them regularly and over the past five years that they have been practicing this farming, we have learnt a lot of lessons surrounding dairy goats that I am going to share with you in this article. Read also: Wambugu Apple Farm in Nyeri Kenya Watch Youtube Video:  WAMBUGU Apples Farm If you are looking forward to start dairy goats on a large scale or small scale farming, there will be something for you to learn from this article. My parents are small-scale dairy goat farmers doing around 6 goats at a time. They started this project because of th

How to make a kitchen garden in Kenya: Cone kitchen garden

  Simple steps to make a kitchen garden in Kenya This is an opportunity for every rural family to make a kitchen garden in Kenya. Just as the name indicates, a cone kitchen garden is a type of garden that resembles a cone, like that of an ice-cream holder. It consists of arranging soil in a conical shape above the ground to create more space for crop growing. Cone kitchen garden is efficient in that it allows for mixed cropping since different species of crop are grown on different layers. Materials and procedure of constructing a Cone kitchen garden in Kenya: Polythene sheet : It should be the heavy one, commonly called the dam-liner in local hardware. Alternatively, you can use old circular containers that have different circumferences in a manner that they can be concentric. Site identification : Chose a site that receives sufficient direct sunlight throughout the day and well drained. Mark the middle point of the garden site, and arrange the containers/polythene in layers, "