Report 1: (03/18/2009) DCV: The CaneThumper® in the Philippines
The Philippines is located in South Eastern Asia, archipelago between the Philippine Sea and the South China Sea, east of Vietnam. It has a tropical maritime climate and is hence good for sugarcane. The fields are fairly flat and are generally planted flat or on a ridge. One of the biggest problems is the general field hygiene of the cane with the weeds causing the highest losses in the sugarcane yield. The harvesting is done all by hand at an average of approximately 1.6 tons per person per day. This includes cutting, cleaning and topping. The costs for manual cutting vary from area to area but lie between 60 and 100 Pesos per ton for the cutting and a further 60 to 100 Pesos per ton for the loading. The two jobs are split into different gangs, a loading and a cutting gang. In certain areas like Negros they first load onto a bull cart and take out of the lands at an extra cost of 40 pesos per ton.
The CaneThumper®-System fits smoothly into the Philippine conditions at a cost of less than 60 Pesos per ton and using less labour. It is perfect for the smaller farmers and its multi-purpose functions is ideal to offer the farmers a way to cut not only their cane but grass, weeds and other crops
Labour Requirements of the in the Philippine’s
The breakdown is the following:
- Driver: 1 (250 to 350 Pesos per day)
- Windrowers: 5 boys ( 150 to 210 pesos per day)
- Toppers: 1-2 men (150 to 210 Pesos per day)
Extra cleaners will be required in the heavy trash varieties so that clean cane is delivered to the mill and so that the farmer does not get penalties.
The cut was very low (ground level) on the flat lands. The photo’s below show the cutting height and the worst cut encountered. When comparing to hand cut it is much lower and showed a saving of up to 8tons per ha since the manual cutters cut anywhere from 30mm to as much as 150mm above ground level. This saving alone will pay for the machine in 2 years.
The output of the CaneThumper® can vary between places since it is very dependant on the local conditions and the managing of the farmer. For the Philippines with 1.5m row spacing the following output can be achieved:
This table is based on the speeds we were harvesting measured with a GPS. We got up to cutting speeds of 1000m/hr. Considering that a ha at 1.5m row spacing is 6667m then 1 ha would take 6.7hrs.
Why should a philippine farmer buy a CaneThumper®?
- Decrease harvest cost down to as little as 50 Pesos per ton.
- Use any available labourers to cut the cane at an output of over 5tons per person per day.
- Management tool that helps lowering the cut to mill delay since it cuts so quickly and so raises the recovery of sugar for the farmer
- Offers a lower cut that will give the farmer more yield at a higher sugar content.