Farming practices have been changing over the years. Gone is the day we would feed animals without processing their feeds. The post-harvest maize and sugar cane waste are processed using a chaff cutter and fed to the animals. Farmers mix this with other animal feeds such as hay to provide cattle with optimal nutritional supplements. Chaff cutters have made farm work relatively easy and less menial.
The steady growth of farm mechanization
Farm mechanization has become a norm among small-scale farmers. By reducing the cost of operations-especially saving on labor-has led to more profitable small-scale farmers. Chaff cutters have helped increase farm productivity. As a farmer, you can reduce crop farm waste by processing it into feed and improve animal production such as milk.
How does a chaff cutter operate?
The chaff-cutter will be used in the farm to cut dried hay, maize stalks, Napier grass, and other farm feed such as lusan grass. The chaff cutter will cut the farm feeds into small pieces and mixed in with other processed farm feeds for more nutrition.
Types of chaff cutters available in Kenya
Manually operated chaff cutters
The manually operated chaff cutter will have a leaver fitted on a flywheel and will be ideal for small-scale farmers who do not have a connection to the mains. They make the body of the chaff cutter out of cast iron which is a durable material. Farmers will operate this chaff-cutter manually.
For farmers who don’t have a lot to invest in a mechanized chaff cutter, this would be the ideal starting point.
Motor operated chaff cutters
A motor-operated chaff cutter will be fitted with a petrol or diesel engine. For a more mechanized chaff cutter, a technician can rig your chaff cutter to work with the mains socket. This is more common in the country and widely used by most farmers. The chaff cutters are less labor-intensive and will save a lot on labor.
The Kenyan market has different chaff cutters and the choice of the farmer will be informed by the farm requirements.
Blower model chaff cutter
The blower chaff cutter will be ideal for small-scale farmers who have more than a few heads of cattle to feed every day. They make it durable to cut maintenance costs. It will produce more uniform feeds for the cattle.
The uniform smaller feeds will aid in the digestion of feed in animals and improve production. With a production capacity of 400–600 kg/hr, the blower chaff cutter will reduce farm wastage. The blower chaff cutter will process farm crop wastage such as maize stalks.
A tractor-pulled and operated chaff cutter
The tractor pulled and operated chaff cutter will be driven on the filled. It will cut and process the feed and then package the feed for collection. It is ideal for medium to large-scale farmers who have several heads of cattle that need to be fed every day.
It will cut labor costs as you will need someone to drive and collect the packages feed.
The prices of chaff cutters in Kenya will be determined by the chaff cutter that you will need for your farm. The best option would be to consult with an agricultural expert before embarking on the purchase. Mechanizing your farm is a factor you need to consider if you’re aiming for profitability.