Contributionof agricultural sector in Economic growth of Pakistan is shrinking every year dueto perpetual use of orthodox practices by the farming community which aggravatethe ever widening rural-urban income fissure. Agricultural mechanization playsa paramount role in improving agricultural production and productivity indeveloping countries. The average farm size in Pakistan is small (2.5 acres)and small and marginal land holdings (less than 2.0 ha) account for 85% of landholdings. Mechanizing small and non-contiguous group of small farms is against’economies of scale’ for individual ownership of farm machinery.It was observed that there was a direct correlation between farm poweravailability and productivity during the past six decades. Being an agrariancountry, mechanization can be called as back bone of Pakistan’s economy as itoptimizes the use of biological, chemical and hydrological inputs.
So far,Pakistan has only experienced selective farm mechanization as this concept hasremained limited to use of tractors only and at the country level, the temporalanalysis shows that an increase in tractor population from 1975 -1984 was about341% while it was 61% from 1984-1994. At present there are about 0.94 milliontractors in Pakistan, which alone provides 0.84 hp/acre. Land preparation isthe only operation that is nearly 100% mechanized in the country for almost allcrops with 901 thousand chisel plough and 108 thousand Mould board ploughs.
Themarket of planting and spraying machinery has grown from 70 and 21 thousands in2004 to 295 and 1438 thousands in 2014 respectively due to the inclination ofthe farming community towards mechanized sowing and spraying. The thrasher’smarket in Pakistan is estimated at 20,000-30,000 units annually by salesresulting in nearly 100% mechanized threshing operation for cereal crops. Byincreasing the available horse power per hectare and by the proper managementof agricultural machinery the average crop yield can be enhanced. 1.
Farm poweravailability in Pakistan: Farm power is a fundamental part ofpresent day mechanization of agriculture. Despite the fact that, the tractor isamong one of main energy source at farm level yet the draft animals ,horticultural laborers, little scale diesel motors and electric engines (Table1) are utilized as a source of energy in the country (Iqbal et al., 2015).
Thequantity of tractors was around 300 thousand before twentieth century’s overand there was almost 100% increase in number of tractors from 2002 to 2007(GOP, 2008). The quantity of tractor developed from almost 700 thousands out of2008 to 948 thousands in 2014, having a power from 50 – 80 hp, yet main shareof them fall in 50 torque classification (GOP, 2015). In view of the number oftractors in Pakistan for the year 2013-14 (GOP, 2015) and total cropped area of22.
68 million hectares (GOP, 2011), there is one tractor for each 24 hectaresof farm land. In order to avail power requirements, an induction of nearly 130thousands of tractors was recommended by the year 2017. The currentmanufacturing facilities available in the country are enough to produce therequired number of tractors as almost all the manufacturing facilities areworking on single shift basis.
2. Present statusof farm mechanization in Pakistan: In Pakistanincome is very low. Agriculture is most essential sector because of its mainduty of providing health nutritious food to the quickly increasing population.In order to enhance the production of land, appropriate mechanization strategyshould be adapted developed and by keeping in view the past situation ofmechanization in the country. This following passages will sum up data inregards to the level of farm mechanization in the country and try to indicatethe weak zones of the field. Table 1 Different sourcesof farm power available in country Power Source Average HP Capacity Population Available HP Tractors 50 948,919 47445950 Work Animals 0.
5 200000 100000 Human Labor 0.1 38.6*106 38.6*106 Tube wells 16.75 1075073 18007473 2.1 Mechanizationfor land development in Pakistan: Pakistan is expecting to have twicepopulation and become 4th largest nation by 2050 from current status of the 6th mostpopulous state of the world (Feeney and Alam, 2003). The total farm land hasincreased by just 40% during past 60 years, while there was more than 4 timesincrease in population with urban expansion of over seven-folds resulting intomega-cities as well as rising population pressure on cultivated land (Ahmad,2007).
Agricultural total area in the country is 30.95 million hectares out ofwhich only 22.68 million hectares is being actually cultivated (GOP, 2011).
Allcropped area come down from 23.76 million hectares to 22.54 million hectaresduring 2009 to 2014 due to severe floods, water shortage and salinity issues inthe country cause to enhance of cultivable waste land from 8.14 to 8.27 millionhectares over the same period (GOP, 2011). A major portion of that cultivable8.
27 million hectares waste could be brought under cultivation by harnessingthe available water resources, and using mechanical power. Cultivable wasteland development can be done by using earth traction equipment through tractorfront mounted blades, dozers, land levelers and excavator. Figure 2 Increase innumber of tractors (GOP, Tractor mounted front blades are available throughprivate sector while bulldozers for land development are available from thepublic sector. This cultivable waste land can economically be developed forcultivation through the use of crawler tractors/bulldozers only. The existingfleet of 338 operational bulldozers in Punjab (GOP, 2015), 84 in Sindh (GOS,2015) is insufficient to convert 3.
52 million hectares of cultivable waste landinto the productive. It is roughly calculated that with the present power ofbulldozers, it will take about 100 years to develop the total cultivable wasteland of Province Punjab. Yearwise totalcropped area vs culturable waste 2.2Mechanization for tillage and seed bed preparation in Pakistan: Mostly in Pakistan, primary and secondarytillage operations are adopted for soil. Primary tillage is opening of thecompacted soil with the help of different ploughs to break the hard pan causedby compacted soils.
Furthermore, primary tillage is opening of the compactedsoil with the assistance of various plough to break the hard pan caused bycompacted soils. Secondary tillage on the other hand is performed after primarytillage for lighter or finer operations as after primary tillage, the fieldsare left with large clods with some weeds and partially uprooted stubbles.. Cultivatoris the most widely used implement for primary as well as secondary tillage ofsoil and is growing radically during the last four decades. The availability ofthe cultivator in the country has augmented from 369 thousands in 2004 to 901thousands in 2014, whereas the share of moldboard plow, disc plow, disc harrow,rotavator and chisel plow has enlarged from 40 to 189, 29 to 142, 23 to 94, 47 to113 and 8 to 47 thousands respectively, during the same period (Table 2).Continues increase in the cultivator is due to its low draft requirement andalso its price is considerably less as compared to the other tillageimplements. Repeated use of cultivator not only creates hardpan which adverselyeffects root development/penetration, but it does not fulfill the purpose oftillage as described above.
Most of the progressive farmers do use mould boardplow and disc plow for primary tillage and disc harrow and rotary tiller(rotavator) for secondary tillage specially for sowing of wheat after paddy andcotton in Punjab. Protection culturing practices, for example, zero tillage forsowing of wheat in fields with rice stubbles, perpetual beds culturing for sowingof cotton on beds of past harvest and mulch or stubble culturing formaintenance of past product stubbles in the field are additionally drilled onrestricted scale not exclusively to limit cost of culturing and seedbedreadiness, yet additionally to moderate ozone harming substances. Table 2 Growth of different tillageimplements during the last four decades (GOP, 2015) Years Cultivators MB Plough Disc Plough Disc Harrow Chisel Plough Rotavator 1984 146863 7319 6355 8140 712 2101 1994 236272 28413 20372 12233 6535 5594 2004 369866 40050 29218 23764 8514 47919 2014 901473 189784 142338 94892 47446 113870 2.3 Mechanizationin sowing and planting in Pakistan: The selection of suitable sowingequipment can play an imperative role in suitable crop establishment bymaintaining the sowing depth appropriately (Tanveer et al.
, 2003). The optimumplant population and row to row distance can only be achieved if appropriatesowing machinery is used. The main reason for low crop yield in Punjab isscanty plant population (Iqbal et al., 2015). Due to time limitation or highcost of tillage and seedbed preparation, most of the farmers spread seedthrough broadcasting (Iqbal et al.
, 2012). This trend of lower or partial mechanizationin sowing continues to exist in the other provinces of the country whichneither provides desired plant population nor results in proper yield. Forsowing of row crops like cotton, maize, sunflower, groundnut and others,multi-crop planters are commonly used which maintains designed plant to plantdistance (Farooq et al., 1992). Use of such planters may also require more thanrecommended seed rate (Singh et al., 2005).
In order to overcome this problem,pneumatic planters, inclined/vertical seed plate planters are used in Punjab ona very limited scale. A rapid increment has been observed in the market shareof the sowing machinery with an annual sale of approximately 22 thousandimplements over the last one decade (GOP, 2015). The growth in the number ofdrills and planters is just 52 thousands during the 1984 to 1994 (GOP, 2004),whereas the market of these implements has grown from 70 thousands in 2004 to295 thousands in 2014 due to the inclination of the farming community towardsmechanized sowing. The increment in purchase of sowing machine was more than200% and this promptly increasing trend during the last ten years illustratesthat farming community has now realized the adaption of suitable sowingmachinery is indispensable for proper crop stand, which is the key to success.
The market for self-propelled (walking and riding type) rice transplanters inPakistan was almost zero 5-6 years back as the rice transplantation was donecompletely manually with the use of labor. Presently, many companies inPakistan are importing rice trans-planters from China and Korea and marketingthem in the rice-wheat zones of country. 2.4 Mechanizationin harvesting and threshing in Pakistan: Harvesting of cereal crops, in Pakistan, is a problemsince long as this still manually done operation. Tractor mounted reaperwindrowers and combine harvesters are also used to a greater extent. Harvestinglosses due to delayed harvesting as well as use of inappropriate harvestingmachinery for wheat, rice and other oilseed crops has been estimated to bearound 10%-15% .
Harvesting of rice done with wheat combines results inexcessive grain loss and reduced rice recovery. This also results intoincreased grain breakage during milling operation. Presently, wheat threshingin Pakistan is almost fully mechanized. Threshing of wheat is mostly done withthe help of stationary threshers which are powered through tractor PTO, engineor electric motors. The commercially produced wheat threshers are although of highthroughput capacity but are heavy in weight and thus costly, energyinefficient, ergonomically unsafe. Threshing of basmati rice is generally donemanually, but on a very limited scale head feeding type threshers are alsoused.
For threshing of coarse grain rice, whole crop threshers are alsoavailable. Chickpea in the country is usually threshed with littlemodifications in wheat thresher and by incorporating proper size sieves. Thethrasher’s market in Pakistan is estimated at 20,000-30,000 units annually bysales resulting in nearly 100% mechanized threshing operation for cereal crops.The tractor mounted stationary thresher grows from 137 thousands in 2004 to 353thousands in 2014. The growth of combine harvester is quite slow and grew from3 thousands to 29 thousands during the last ten years.
This slow growth is dueto the high cost of the machine and relatively small farm size which makes itunaffordable for local small land holders. 2.5 Current Status of Maize Production inPakistan:Ø After wheat andrice, maize is third important cerealØ Maize accounts for4.8% of the total cropped area and 3.5% of the value of agricultural output.
Ø Planted on anestimated area of 0.9 million hectare with an annual production of 1.3million tonnes.Ø The bulk (97%) ofthe total production come from two major provinces, NWFP, accounting for 57% ofthe total area and 68% of total production. Punjab contribute 38% acreage with30% of total maize grain production. 2.6 Mechanization of Corn in Pakistan: While mechanization has beenwidely adopted in Pakistan for certain production operation i.e.
landpreparation, seeding & shelling, the use of tractors in planting,intercultural and harvesting has not been optimized. The use of tractor iswidespread in low and mid-land altitude area in NWFP and Central Punjab. Morethan 80% of maize farmers in both areas use mechanical sheller. Since theimproved cultivation of many crops and maize in particular is machine oriented.The growing labour shortage and increased input level further aggravates theuse of machinery while excellent farm machinery exists but the cost is too highfor adoption by farmers and custom tractor operators. Greater availability ofsuch tractor powered equipment offer one of the best strategies for increasingthe productivity of maize and many other crops. Successful maize research and development programmers sharecommon elements.
First, they must be able to develop superior maize varietiesand hybrids and generate high-yielding technologies that are appropriate intypical farming systems. Second, seed production and distribution systems be inplace so that farmers can obtain quality seed of the appropriate varieties atreasonable prices and in timely fashion. Finally the local and nationalmarketing systems for maize must provide sufficient incentives to the farmersfor intensifying production. 3. Conclusion: The yield gap can be coveredby introducing advanced farm equipment and the enhanced use of farm equipment.To maintain the crop yield and to fulfill food requirements, use of machineryviz.
drill, planters, tractors, harvesting machinery and sprayers is enhanced.A lot of opportunities exist in Pakistan to get benefits from this sector butthis can only be realized by introducing effective policies and strategies atthe government level. The strengthening and effectiveness of researchinstitutes of the country are also necessary which will ultimately lead to abetter utilization of innovative machinery for better productions. In thiscourse, I have learnt v Preciselymechanized sowing of maize by using CornPlanter (seed metering device) in Chinav Adaptionof suitable machinery for rice transplanting to maximize yield as it issuccessful in China. v Mechanizedvegetables grafting as it is being usedin 90 % vegetables in China v Modernmechanization for potato crop in China.For future perspective, abovementioned modern mechanization could be efficiently utilize to enhance the peracre yield of different crops in Pakistan.