SAO PAULO, Dec 3 (Reuters) - Orders for a Brazilian
pig-feeding robot, which plays classical music while dispensing
meals, soared this year as farmers strove to cut costs amid the
Roboagro, the privately-owned company that sells the robot,
said in a statement sent to Reuters on Thursday that orders rose
by an average of 400% to 60 units per month.
The machine uses linear feeders allowing the animals, which
are divided in pens, to receive the exact amount of feed needed
for each meal. As it works, it plays classical music, which the
company claims mitigates animal stress.
Roboagro Director Giovani Molin said in the statement the
robot reduces the presence of humans on the pig farms, and
generates data that helps improve overall herd management.
Feed accounts for up to 75% of pig production costs, and
every cent counts amid a steep rise in grain prices due to
According to Roboagro, farmers who use the technology can
improve the feed conversion ratio of pigs, increasing animal
quality. The robot can save an estimated 40,000 reais ($7,792)
per year per batch of 1,000 animals, it says, a calculation that
does not include labor costs.
Roboagro says its robot is in use in some 500 farms in
Brazil, including suppliers to large processors like JBS SA
and BRF SA, which grappled with COVID-19
outbreaks at their facilities.
Brazil, a behemoth protein producer, boosted the volume of
pork exports by 40% in the first 10 months of the year. That
trade generated $1.87 billion in revenue, a nearly 50% rise on
strong Chinese demand. ($1 = 5.1332 reais)
(Reporting by Ana Mano;
Editing by Marguerita Choy)