Tiny Japanese Rice Harvester

It is just so cute. I’m fascinated by how much rice culture practices and equipment varies around the world. Japan has some very small fields, so the Giant Combines used in California are useless. But this machine is just incredibly small.

Similar tech for planting small scale. No air seed drops here:

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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4 Responses to Tiny Japanese Rice Harvester

  1. Foyle says:

    Cute, but points to massively subsidized, inefficient and uneconomic farming practices. Japan could produce the same agricultural output with probably <5% of workforce if they just ended subsidies and allowed economics to consolidate farms into larger efficient units where full-sized machinery would be effective.

  2. p.g.sharrow says:

    Japan has very little flat land as it is a very mountainous country. Small plots and terraced hill sides are the order. American farmers enjoy fields that are larger then big Japanese farms, American farms are often larger then Japanese farming districts

  3. p.g.sharrow says:

    I once did commercial harvesting with 12 foot cut machines. About 3 times the size of that cute little Japanese machine. I could often cut twice the acreage of the 24 foot machines because they had trouble getting into and out of fields and required clean flat fields to work in. My machines got much better grain production in quality and quantity from a field because they were easier to tune or adjust for the conditions in each field or section of a field. Last but not the least my small machines were one tenth the cost to own and operate compared to the giant machines.
    ..

  4. H.R. says:

    @p.g. – You know what you’re talking about.

    I’m in wonderful Mid-west AG country which used to be a patchwork quilt of 120 or 240 or 640 acre farms. These were family farms that were carved out of land grants to Revolutionary War soldiers who got land, usually a quarter-township, since the U.S. Federal government didn’t have money to pay them for their service.

    I’ll fast forward through how we got to Big Ag due to WWI, WWII, college education, high tech specialization, and kids losing interest in the family farm, and make my point.

    There’s Big Ag and then there are still successful family farmers who have stayed in the biz and bought out small holders (kids who don’t want to inherit a farm) and lease a lot of additional acreage from kids who are holding onto the farm waiting for developers to pay tippy-top dollar but they don’t farm.

    Big machines are a must for Big Ag and these remaining family farmers who run a lot of land to make money on volume (acreage). The miles of flat land only broken up by tree and fence lines are perfect for monster machinery.

    BUT… in keeping on the topic of these mini-machines, I am thinking that younger people who are interested in farming (Ha! How many are there?), there is still a lot of land that goes for hundreds of dollars per acre because the 500, 800, 1,200 acre holding is only maybe 30% tillable.

    In the U.S., these mini-machines may open an avenue for “entry level farming”, where someone who can’t afford the $3,000-$5,000 per acre for prime farmland can at least get their foot in the door with an affordable holding and affordable machinery.

    I think that’s what’s interesting about this posting by E,M. The mini-machines are just interesting in themselves, but they may open a path to people who are tired of the city rat race and would like to get back to an agrarian lifestyle.

    They’d still have to be smart, cagey farmers so they don’t crash and burn, but this equipment opens the door for a return to family farming, where you make a living of it without having to go bigger-bigger-bigger just to keep your head above water.

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