Tasty Avos optimises operations, gains valuable information and saves big with Farmtrack’s real time vehicle tracking technology
Tasty Avos is a family-owned avocado farm close to Sevenoaks in Kwazulu-Natal. Owner, Neale Harman, bought the land to develop the business in 2014. Neale is also the Kwazulu-Natal representative for the SA Avo Growers Association. His farm mainly produces Hass, Fuerte and Ryan cultivars, with a focus on efficient farm management for both spraying and non-spraying activities.
Tasty Avos started using Farmtrack’s real time vehicle tracking technology in 2021 to help manage the farm. Neale has another farm located far away from his main farm so needed a system capable of
monitoring his drivers operating in the orchards. “We used to lease a farm quite a distance from us. It was critical for us to see when the drivers started working in the mornings, as well as where on the farm
they were busy working.”
- Managing two farms in different locations
- Monitoring actual hours for contracted
- Disputes about reporting
- Monitoring vehicle speed for optimum
spraying, ripping and liming
- Drivers time wasted returning to base
- Accurate reporting of vehicle use saved R35,000
in one incident
- Real-time monitoring and management of
drivers operating in the orchards
- Improved spraying, ripping and liming
- Tracking, logging and storing every minute
worked and meter traveled
- Saving fuel, chemicals and time
Monitoring hours billed resulted in R35,000 savings and mitigates disputes
Neale’s farm vehicles are also contracted out for others to use. When calculating the hours worked, he noticed that the reported hours were much lower than he had expected them to be. Using Farmtrack’s reports, he found that the hours were calculated incorrectly on one of his tractors.
“I would never have been able to monitor and know this otherwise. It has saved me R35 000! My second Farmtrack device is on the way because I have two tractors out on contract, and only one with Farmtrack installed.” He believes that Farmtrack will help to mitigate any disputes which may arise from hours billed for contract work, as every minute worked and meter travelled is logged and stored for review.
Live vehicle tracking and monitoring driver speed improves spraying, ripping and liming
When asked which features he found most helpful, Neale stated that he uses the dashboard’s map with live tracking of vehicles and their movements on his farms, daily. “We need to see where on the farm the drivers are working. I also look closely at the speed the tractors are driving in the orchards. This is critical for spraying properly, but equally as important is the speeds tractors are driving when doing land work – specifically ripping. If drivers drive too quickly, the ground isn’t ripped to depth, affecting our production.”
He also uses the tracking lines on the Farmtrack dashboard to determine whether liming is done properly on the farm. “Swathes are 10m, so I look at the patterns created on the map to determine whether drivers are liming correctly in the orchards. If the lines aren’t evenly spaced, I can pick this up from the map.” Neale takes screenshots of these errors, and others such as missed rows during spraying, and sends them to his drivers to fix the mistakes as soon as they occur.
Managing operations saves fuel, time and chemicals
It is important to Neale to manage drivers and their daily operations on the farm. By knowing where his tractors have worked, he can check whether areas which are difficult to get to have been worked, as well as minimising trips to and from the farmstead to orchards. “Some of our orchards are more than 30 minutes away. If drivers forget tools or come back for lunch, not only do we lose fuel, but we also lose valuable time in the orchards. If I save two trips per day, that equates to two hours of work lost. Without Farmtrack, I would never have been able to check for this.”
Neale recommends Farmtrack not only for avocado farmers, but for all farmers. It gives farmers the ability to monitor their vehicles to optimise operations and make sure that nothing is missed. This saves him thousands of rands in time, fuel, and chemicals, as well as supplying him with valuable information about the work his vehicles do under contract. “I believe it’s worth the price. The savings from catching one miscalculation has already paid for my units for years to come!”