read time 3 minutes

March 25, 2024

Farm management under 100 ha

A common misconception is that digital tools in farming are only for large farms, those cultivating thousands of hectares and equipped with the latest machinery. Indeed, farm management software has become nearly indispensable for such large-scale farms. However, this perspective overlooks a crucial shift in the agricultural landscape: a growing number of smallholders are embracing digitalization, recognizing it as essential to their future farming. Faced with increasing administrative burdens, these farmers are finding that farm management softwares aren’t just for the giants of the industry - it's a key to success for farms of all sizes.

Large farms already know the importance of data

For a farm of a certain size, it is essential to have a digital overview of the farm operations and to manage all the farm's expenses and earnings accurately. With thousands of hectares under cultivation, it is difficult, if not impossible, to keep track of each individual plot of land.

Most large farms have machines that generate huge amounts of data, but what good is that data if you can't integrate it into a system that analyses and evaluates it?

That’s why most large farms use farm management softwares like AgroVIR to gather data directly from the field that they can evaluate their practices and make decisions in the future based on those data.

Smallholders are on the road to digitalisation

Driven partly by generational change and rapid technological improvements in farming techniques, smallholders are expressing a need to modernise their farming practices. They have recognised the benefits and efficiencies that come from having appropriate farm management tools.

Smallholders are often required to comply with a range of land-use and environmental regulations in order to qualify for subsidies. They must document their farming practices and submit regular reports, such as digital farm diary.

Unlike larger farmers, smallholders typically have fewer financial, time and human resources to devote to these administrative tasks. With a farm management system like AgroVIR, farmers can efficiently gather all necessary data and can automatically prepare the required reports.

Once familiar with the system, it significantly reduces the time spent on routine management. Tractor operator can directly upload their work schedules and completed tasks using the Works® mobile application, even from their tractors.

While many small farmers may not have access to advanced machinery, those who do can greatly benefit from its capabilities. Most modern tractors and combines are equipped to gather data such as yield, fertilizer application, fuel consumption, soil scanning results and many more. The system of these machineries can be synchronised with AgroVIR ensuring immediate data transfer, ready to use in digital farm diaries.

It’s time for smallholders to act and improve their cost efficiency!

Widely fluctuating input and grain prices make it very important to accurately monitor costs for profitability. This is only possible if we are aware of the costs of our farming practices, such as diesel consumption and machinery maintenance, usage of fertilizers, pesticides and so on. Knowing the utilisation of our working equipment is essential for cost-effective work organisation. We have to identify areas where they can cut costs or optimize spending, which is crucial for small farms operating on tight budgets.

Small farms tend to have a high proportion of rented land, many of which is heavily fragmented. This results in a large number of land contracts, which are often paper-based and difficult to manage. Farm management software can help by allowing all of the contracts to be stored and controlled in a single repository, thus providing an easy overview. The same applies to all other contracts such as the contract of the grain sales.

Family farms tend to share their experiences with the neighbouring farmer on farming practices, plant varieties, certain fertilizers and pesticides. They are often influenced by these opinions when choosing input materials. AgroVIR Advancer® allows you to see other farmers choice of input materials and for how much they have bought them. This feature helps with decision making and gives farmers a better bargaining position when buying their inputs.

In conclusion, the adoption of digital tools is a significant opportunity for smallholders to overcome the challenges they face. By integrating these technologies, small farmers can keep pace with larger agricultural companies. They can improve their efficiency and resilience in a dynamic agricultural environment.

Kinga Lantos
Martin Csaszar