Put your plans in place to go big

Lindiwe Sithole, host of African Farming Season 2, travels to the Eastern Cape, where she is impressed by the large farming enterprise that Mandla and Johnston Mandlendoda have built up. These two brothers understand what it takes to collaborate. “Luckily we grew up together and did everything together from a young age,” Mandla says. 

Mandla says they did a lot of research to grow their farming enterprise into a multi-disciplinary business with various successful branches. “We understand that farming is not a desire but a calling, and one has to work hard to make it work.” 

Mechanisation equipment can be one of the biggest contributors to input costs, therefore operator training and service plan to protect this investment are of utmost importance in running a large farming enterprise successfully.

Proper planning and selection of equipment are essential to help ensure a profitable and sustainable farming operation. John Deere is known for assisting farmers in maximising production in the most cost-effective way by offering trusted advice and after-parts services. 

Mechanisation planning can include various important factors like industry mechanisation planning guidelines, equipment manufacturer’s specifications, operation work rates, available production cycle days and cultivation methods. 

Admire Mutsvario, Manager of Projects and Strategic Planning at John Deere Africa and the Middle East, cannot emphasise the importance of mechanisation planning enough.

“There is a time for planting and harvesting; every season brings with it tasks to be completed on a farm. Therefore a farmer should plan accordingly by servicing and checking equipment needed in each season before crunch time arrives,” he says. This will help the farmer to prepare better for each task at hand.

“Making sure the necessary equipment is serviced and runs smoothly will enable a farmer to complete tasks without any hiccups while getting the maximum worth out of his investments.” His advice to farmers is to ensure they understand the warranty system subscribed to when investing in equipment.

“If you service your equipment regularly, you will not forfeit the warranty. This will also enable you to resell the equipment when it is no longer needed at a later stage.”

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