The Premise Behind Mixed Farming

When you talk about mixed farming it is actually a kind of farming operation that combines two or more enterprises in a single setup. For instance, raising not just crops but also livestock as well. According to compact utility tractors MN experts, mixed farming operations usually do not reach the economies of scale similar to single-focus farming, there are indeed certain benefits associated with this type of agricultural strategy.

Risks

Limited Capacity

One of the biggest risks of utilizing mixed farming operations is that there is limited capacity in the farm to provide for both. For example, the farmer needs to spread out his resources including precious time, labor and money and land on two different ventures. Farmers that plant crops and raise beef cattle cannot plant as much crops as the farmer that only grows crops as his primary.  It is therefore easy to conclude that he will not be able to take advantage of the economies of scale that are involved in huge setups like reduced cost and better efficiency.

Greater Resources Needed

According to farm equipment MN experts, mixed farming usually requires more resources than single-focus farming. For instance, farmers that only grow wheat needs to invest only in planting and harvesting equipment while a farmer that grows dairy cattle on top of growing wheat will require more equipment such as a mixer wagon, skid steer and bucket tractor to name a few.

Benefits

Diversification Lessens Risk

Mixed farming operators can take advantage of diversification, which offers lesser risk.  Most farming activities are volatile and entirely dependent on market forces. Since a mixed farmer has two products available he spreads the risk out. If one operation falls below expectations the other can do very well.

Better Sustainability

While initially mixed farming lays out higher cost for the farmer, there is a good chance that the resources he has can be re-used in between ventures. For example, manure produced by dairy cows can be used as fertilizer. Mixed farmers can rotate their fields to let cropland rest for a few years, which contributes greatly to the farm’s sustainability by minimizing the need or dependence on chemicals.