Once the internal combustion engine hit the market, there was no turning back. These engines also found their way onto farms and tractors replaced many draught animals. Farms grew bigger as farmers were able to do a great deal more with less labour. Agriculture was forever changed. The production capability that we see on farms today can largely be attributed to the introduction of the tractor.
Tractors perform an array of tasks on a farm and can be used for ploughing, tilling, and planting fields, landscaping, moving or spreading fertiliser and crop spraying. A wide range of farming implements can be attached to utility tractors to help accomplish various tasks.
Discussions about tractors usually centre around their capabilities with regards to the needs of row crop, vegetable or fruit farmers. A large percentage of tractors are however also used by livestock farmers.
Recently Argo Tractors visited Julius Beukes, well-known Dohne Merino breeder near Ladysmith who farms on the lower slopes of the Drakensberg in KwaZulu-Natal. Beukes is mainly a livestock farmer focusing on his Dohne Merino stud as well as a commercial cattle herd. The land that he cultivates is mainly for use in his livestock operation and he predominantly uses contractors for planting and harvesting.
While livestock farming can be profitable and plays an essential role in eco-sustainability, it will only deliver benefits to farmers who are well-equipped to handle it.
Over the years Beukes always used Landini tractors and has recently also incorporated the McCormick brand on the farm. “I use the McCormick tractors because of their versatility and wide range of capabilities. The machines have a comfort and ease of use while maintaining the requisite quality parameters.”
He adds that it was critical to acquire tractors and equipment that drive maximum productivity and efficiency in his livestock operation. “Profit margins are tight and cost effective tractors and implements that offer versatility together with careful consideration of design to minimize fuel usage and emissions, as well as ease of use, are some of the aspects that sets McCormick apart.”
According to Beukes the running costs of the McCormick tractors are not excessive and the fuel efficiency is good. He says that this is a specific advantage due to the high fuel prices currently.
“Regarding technology, ease of use and safety, the McCormick tractors are on par with other tractors in the same class. The price is also very competitive and most important of all, I can rely on Endutrac, the dealership in Dundee, who provides excellent service.”
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