The Logistics of Consumable Agricultural Inputs | DROP2GO

Breaking Down the Logistics of Consumable Agricultural Inputs

The Transportation of Fertiliser, Seed, Chemicals and Pesticides


Managing the last mile of consumable agricultural inputs can be a complicated process. Each category of consumable has its own in-depth considerations that transporters must be knowledgeable in and meet.

Small- and large-scale farms are always under large amounts of pressure to juggle a multitude of tasks while avoiding contamination. Farmers have no choice; they cannot drop one ball. If they do, it can put their entire business in jeopardy in an instant. That’s why it’s vital for transporters and 3PL’s to become reliable experts in the services they offer. Farmers need partners they can count on.

At DROP2GO we are aware of the extreme importance of the last mile being driven to perfection. Therefore, our latest article looks at the logistics of consumable agricultural inputs, how each is a unique process, and how to manage it all with ease and elegance.


Fertiliser Logistics

According to industry experts, South Africa’s fertiliser prices are the third highest in the world. A huge contributor to this is the fact that this consumable agricultural input is no longer transported by rail. It used to be that it was transported straight from the port to the farm or depot by train, but we, unfortunately, don’t have that luxury anymore.

On the flip side, this gives transporters more opportunities for business. Now, fertiliser is usually handled about five times. Twice at the harbour, once when it’s transported to a central storage facility, and then again when it’s transported to a farm. This is at least three more opportunities for transporters to make money and build business relationships.


The Transport of Fertiliser

The method of transporting fertiliser is dependent on the farmer, the kind of fertiliser, and the amount purchased. Most transportation of large-scale orders is organised by the fertiliser company that usually outsources delivery as part of the cost to the farmer.

Sometimes farmers can organise a decent discount on large orders if they commit to collecting. In cases like this, it is smart to partner with a last mile delivery service provider. One that is experienced in transporting potentially hazardous contents.

One of the latest trends that farmers are moving towards is ordering already mixed liquid fertilisers that arrive ready to spray. The perk of this is that it takes the risk out of your staff mixing ingredients incorrectly which can become expensive or damage your plants. When organising this delivery, it’s smartest to use an agricultural logistics company that has a firm grasp of the regulations and required paperwork in this method.



The Transportation of Seed

Unlike fertiliser, the transportation of seed is more straightforward. Farmers rarely organise delivery. This is handled by the seed supplier. Most seed companies have a network of courier partners that they work with.

There is great opportunity in this sector for independent transporters that can navigate roads that are off the beaten track. As long as the transporter has a vehicle that is temperature-controlled that can keep the seed below 15 degrees Celsius, there is ample opportunity for work.



The Transportation of Chemicals and Pesticides

When ordering pesticides or chemicals in bulk, the supplier is usually the one to organise transportation. The reason for this is that they have a responsibility to make sure all safety regulations and laws are being met.

These companies usually work with logistic companies that have temperature-controlled tankers and responsible seasoned drivers.



How to Manage the Logistics of Consumable Agricultural Inputs

One of the most difficult aspects of getting these inputs delivered is perfectly managing the time and paperwork. Luckily, we have developed a solution. DROP2GO offers:

  • Courier integration with a large network of approved couriers
  • Automated courier selection based on area, the kind of logistics partner you need, cost or speed
  • Waybill and label printing
  • Real-time tracking of deliveries
  • Delivery ETA notifications

Whether you are the farmer, supplier or transporter, our digital platform will help you streamline your logistics processes in an instant.


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