Joinville is located in the second most southern state of Brazil, Santa Catarina. This is how they grow rice in the region. It’s a bit different than back home in that the ground, due to rain, is always wet. I meet a local rice farmer who introduces how the ground is prepared, what equipment is used and how the rice is harvested.
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Well, we had a great Christmas, an awesome new years and I hope you guys did too!
We’ve really been enjoying our time here at the beach.
But now we’ve got to get back to Joinville! And just as I promised in Episode 18, titled: This is Joinville, I’m going to find and show you guys a rice field on the outskirts of the city. And explain how rice is harvested in the region. So let me drop off the bike and grab a rental car because I know exactly where to find some rice fields.
I’m here on Rodovia do Arroz (or Rice Road). And as the name implies, we’re going to find a ton of rice farms. So, let’s see what we can come across.
So I just pulled into this rice farm it looked really cool and beautiful.
So after cruising Rice Road a little bit I stopped here at the first farm with an open gate. Also I really liked the aesthetics with how the farm was laid out with the barns, the trees, had animals, tractors. So I’m really looking forward to showing you all this.
I met the owner, the farmer Norberto.
“I have 230 hectares.”
And he has already shown me around and explained me the system, shown me the equipment. So I’m going to go back and revisit those things.
And behind me is a rice field of medium grain rice. That’s the only variety that they plant here.
So, right now, let’s go check out the process.
“The average yield here, per hectare, is about 120-130 50 kg. sacks.”
Now, because this region constantly rains–while preparing the ground for planting the rice seed–it’s wet, it’s moist, damp at the very least so the equipment needs to be suitable for this climate.
Let’s take a look.
Now, while working the ground, preparing for planting the rice farmer will use these different metal wheels depending on the application and the equipment they’re using. These metal wheels of course so they don’t get stuck in the muddy rice field.
Take a look here: 2 weight plates on this tractor and it’s pretty small as you can see. And that is because the ground here, because it’s so moist and so wet, they can’t have heavy equipment because it would just sink down and get straight stuck away.
“The price today is reasonable. R$47.00 per 50 kg. sack”
And of course these tractors here have their normal tires on them, however when they’re being used in the fields to work the ground they’re going to attach those metal tires that we saw earlier.
So on this side of the barn, along the wall here, we have what is essentially a mower and that’s going to be the first piece of equipment that they use while preparing the ground to apply the seeds. The mower is going to cut mud and weeds that were growing in the field.
“The majority of the crop is in this stage. It’s not ripe. It’s still green. It’s still blooming. But I think in February it will be a big crop.”
Now after the ground has been worked up they will use this piece of equipment here–sort of like a tri-plane to then flatten out that muddy worked up ground.
And this tractor here, as Norberto explained to me, is the most important piece of equipment that they have. As they use it to apply seed, herbicides, pesticides, whatever application they need to do once the ground has been worked up and for planting–they’re going to use this tractor here. And notice the super thin tires so that they can move through the rice field once it’s been irrigated.
And as you can see here, on the rear of the tractor, they have installed the implement which applies the seed to the readied field.
And unhooked from the tractor here, you see the tank for tank mixtures and the boom for when applying herbicides and pesticides–also using this tractor here with the skinny wheels.
“We wait until the rice in the field is about 18-22% moisture.”
So it’s a little bit of a tight fit over here but here’s one of their smaller harvesters. Norberto explained a little bit about that so I’ll let him take over.
“…It’s help for the other, because the other harvester we have is much larger. It’s twice as big. We harvest with these two machines together, on average, 2,000 50 kg. sacks per day.”
So guys, that’s a Brazilian rice farm. I hope you guys enjoyed the visit as much as I did. I think it’s just fascinating–the similarities as well as the differences.
I’d really like to thank…Norberto, “thank you very much.”
“Look…I thank you for your interest.”