Mario Bragachini, coordinator of INTA Precop, estimated that by 2020 these figures will be reached if value is added to primary production at the source.
In 2010-11, our country exported 39 billion dollars in raw materials of agricultural origin, manufactures, goods, grains and biofuels. But with an increase in value-added production based on these primary tones, it will be possible to reach the year 2020 with foreign sales of 100 billion dollars as stated in the Agri-Food Strategic Plan (PEA),” said Mario Bragachini, coordinator of the Efficiency Project harvest, post-harvest and agro-industry at the beginning of INTA (Precop).
And it is under this premise that the first Congress of Added Value at the Beginning (AVO), “Associative Integration from Field to Gondola” will be held together with the 11th Precision Agriculture Course and the 6th Precision Machinery Fair from July 18 to 20 at INTA Manfredi , Córdoba.
Bragachini pointed out that, among other novelties, the conference will include six training rooms with conferences and workshops, national and international speakers, more than 150 companies that will exhibit precise and dynamic machines in the field with transmission on huge LED screens.
In this sense, he emphasized the importance of the mayor’s participation in supporting and raising awareness of AVO: “It is necessary that 2,200 municipal leaders of the productive interior actively participate in this process of change in which the industrial, agricultural and food industry and “bioenergy are hand in hand with spatial planning and infrastructure works”.
“We must take advantage of the fact that we are one of the most efficient countries in the world for the production of soybeans, corn and wheat” and explained that this positioning in grain production and productivity was achieved thanks to “introduced technological progress”.
For the Precop coordinator: “Agricultural production in Argentina in the last 20 years has increased in technology for agricultural machinery in some cases up to 3 or 4 times.”
“So,” said Mario Bragachini, “the whole package of biotechnology, direct seeding, balanced fertilization, process technology, harvest and post-harvest efficiency and precision agriculture adopted by the agricultural producer made it possible to go from 12 man hours per hectare to an average of two before decades, so that today we would produce cereals up to 1.6 hours per hectare per year.”
For the expert, the key to the take-off is adding value at the source to primary production because although “there has been a displacement of agriculture in relation to animal husbandry due to greater competitiveness up to eight million hectares” not by increasing the degree of industrialization of cereals, paradoxically, the demand for labor is decreasing and the rural population it does not grow in proportion to this reality.
Mario Bragachini pointed out that in the last population census, he stated that the big cities grew by 12 percent, while in the interior they are talking about 6 or 7 percent: “It is clear that there is a shift from towns to big cities. This is reflected in the low development of some localities that were intended only for primary production.”
Thus, the industrialization of cereals is imposed as a necessity, which, in addition to the economic aspect, would alleviate the social situations, and even the peculiarities of people: “No one in the world eats a grain of corn, soy or sorghum directly. Only in the first case does 1% have that fate; Then the rest is turned into animal feed, and in the second industrialization into human food.”
With these parameters, the agricultural producer must associatively integrate to carry out part or all of the process at the beginning. The term “associativism” appears because this whole process of integration into the grain chain of agro-food industrialization generates a demand for knowledge, technology and money, and it is impossible for small and medium-sized producers to achieve this alone.
In a good port
Another paradigm shift that exacerbates the problems of those who deal only with primary production is the increase in oil prices. 10 years ago, it was worth $14 per barrel, while corn was worth $130 per ton. Today, the value of corn has doubled, and that of oil seven times, specified the AVO expert.
For this reason, in a country like Argentina, when the producer moves away from the port of Rosario, the cargo takes up a large part of the production costs. “Today we see corn produced 500 kilometers from the port for 680 pesos in Rosario, and there are places where they spend 1,800 just on freight.”
For this reason, the agricultural producer who is far from the port of Rosario has a “hyperneed to avoid the burden through the industrialization of grains at the origin.” In this way, the technique was expanded, value, labor and income were added to the produced ton with consequent local development with fair distribution.