The governments of many countries across the globe are trying to promote the use of agricultural harvesters by offering subsidies and necessary training to farmers. For instance, in 2014, the Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare of India implemented a scheme called Sub Mission on Agricultural Mechanization (SMAM) through which it aimed to provide a subsidy of up to 40% of the cost of combine harvesters. The agricultural sector in the European Union also receives a subsidy of about USD 50 billion every year.
Farmers across the world are pressed with issues related to the shrinking labor force. For instance, Thailand, which traditionally was an agrarian country, has now transformed into a more industrialized country, and its agricultural labor is quickly shifting to the services sector. In December 2013, out of the country’s total population in the labor force, about 42% of the population was in the agricultural sector. By September 2015, only 34% of the total population in the labor force was estimated to be in the agricultural sector.
Similarly, in recent years, Brazil has been observing a shift in its labor force from the agricultural sector to other labor-intensive sectors like healthcare, education, and retail sales. As a result of shrinking labor force, farmers face substantial losses, mainly at the time of harvesting, and are investing in harvesters, which allow for highly efficient farming.
Vendors in the global agricultural harvester market are upgrading their existing product lines by integrating advanced features to enhance productivity, efficiency, and convenience. New features like telemetry; intelligent sensing technologies; grain tank extensions; and upgrading of the engine to provide better traction, lower loss rate, and lower soil compaction; and crop analysis system are being incorporated in the harvesters.
“Modern combine harvesters are also coming with automatic control systems like the GPS and navigation system, which help in identifying the exact position of the machine and carry out the harvesting operations with greater precision,” adds Arushi.
Farming is a time-bound process. Seasonal variations have created harvest windows for crops that produce optimal yields when farming operations like planting and harvesting can be performed within a small interval of time. Harvest windows of different areas vary with weather and geographical changes. For instance, corn crops are harvested within a two-month span (October-November) in the US; in China, they can be harvested from August to October; and in Brazil, they can be harvested from February to May. The yield and quality of crops can be impacted by a delay in harvesting and short harvest windows imply the need for quickly transferring the agricultural produce from field to storage units. Therefore, to maximize efficiency and productivity in such short periods, large and powerful equipment needs to be used intensively. Thus, the use of advanced equipment like harvesters to get optimal yield from harvest windows is expected to propel the market growth.
Technavio analysts employ primary as well as secondary research techniques to ascertain the size and vendor landscape in a range of markets. Analysts obtain information using a combination of bottom-up and top-down approaches, besides using in-house market modeling tools and proprietary databases. They corroborate this data with the data obtained from various market participants and stakeholders across the value chain, including vendors, service providers, distributors, re-sellers, and end-users.