Farming is not just growing crops. A true farmer is a dedicated manager, involved in every process on the farm during the entire season. Therefore, being a farmer includes much more than just planting and harvesting crops. In fact, a farmer’s job begins much earlier than the planting itself. More importantly, a farmer’s job is not finished with crop harvest. Harvested crops still need to be sorted, packed, stored, and delivered properly to the market.
Packing is one of the last stations in the journey of crops from the field to our tables. For many farmers, packing is one of the most beautiful parts of crop production. There are a few reasons for that. For instance, packing is a unique opportunity to enjoy the fruits of their labor throughout the season, especially if the season was productive. Besides that, during packing, farmers can make last decisions about the other components of post-harvest management. Finally, farmers are aware that after the crops are packed, there is not much work left.
Purpose-Driven Farm Practice
Packing is a special farm practice that connects two extremely important components of every crop production:
- Crop quality management
- Marketing management
In doing so, crop packing is a multi-purpose farm practice that provides a number of opportunities during the post-harvest management.
First, crop packing allows the keeping of a product and facilitates its handling. Second, and more importantly, the packing is responsible for protecting the crops during the entire post-harvest management. Finally, from the market point of view, a package represents the face of the product. What is clear from the aforementioned, is that the packing actually determines the product’s identity.
Focus on the Adequate Crop Packaging
Properly managed, packaging can provide protection from various damages during transport. Furthermore, an adequate package reduces the possibility of microbial contamination from the surrounding environment and extends crop storage life while preserving its quality.
In order to manage crop packing properly, farmers should focus on a few requirements:
- Package should be practical and easy to handle
- Quality package is able to protect the products from damage or contamination
- Crop package should be made of materials suitable for each crop type
- The size and shape of the package should be in accordance with the crop’s requirements
- Farmers who care about sustainability will consider a package that is environmentally friendly and recyclable
The Best Package Will Stand out from the Crowd
Each farmer who competes on the market is running his own race to stand out from the crowd. Therefore, farmers who want to draw attention to their crops will focus on every detail related to their package.
How a farmer will pack his crops will determine the direction of communication with his customers. In this manner, properly designed and created crop package will offer basic information about the product, as well as the producer. Besides that, aiming towards the best results, along with their crop package, farmers often include various quality certificates and traceability reports.
Regarding the crop packaging, the possibilities are really numerous. If all things considered, work that is done here will provide a baseline for a successful post-harvest and sales management.
Text sources: Agcarm || Springer