When Technology Meets Agriculture: Can We Expect More?
By admin October 9, 2018

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Nowadays, agricultural technology is no longer an obscure niche. The blockchain in agriculture and food supply chains markets will be worth over $400 million in the next five years, according to a new report authored by Reportlinker last Thursday.

The boom of agriculture technology can be explained by Demand and Supply Law. The population growth rate and the 800 million people worldwide who suffer from hunger pose great challenges for authorities to double food production by 2050 with less land available each year. For instance, in China, villagers born before the 1970s are getting older, while the younger generations are flowing into urban areas and turning their eyes on the Third Industries. Rural hollowing leaves useable land idled. In addition, the effect of climate change is more than apparent in agriculture. There is sufficient evidence to prove that climate change has slowed yields of crops and put food safety at risk.

According to Beecham Research, smart farming based on IoT can be structured in seven application areas: tracking of farm vehicles, arable farming large and small field farming, livestock monitoring, indoor farming, fish farming, forestry, and storage monitoring (e.g. water tanks, fuel tanks). This has already been realized in every listed area. Up to now, most agricultural technologies were focused on assisting farmers in decision-making. Data has helped farmers harness the power of information to make better-informed decisions that allow them to plan better for harvests and use resources more sustainably.

Software and mobile devices are becoming more popular and allow farmers to move towards precision agriculture or site-specific crop management. Satellite and drone pictures, GPS, GIS, and automated on-the-ground sensing stations all fall into this category, many of which have achieved more than 80% rates in selected counties

Despite the prosperity and promising outlook, there are challenges for all stakeholders. To increase food production, genome editing technology is proffered as a solution and many scientists are focusing on its application on certain crops. On 25 July, the European Court of Justice ruled that genome editing is liable to follow the strict safety and labelling laws governing GM organisms. Critics of the rule claim that it results in big multinational firms’ absolute control of transgenic crops because only they have the resource to follow the stringent requirements. Another obstacle lies in scaling up these new models. For villages with low literacy, complicated procedures and instructions can easily hamper the willingness of participating in. No matter how fancy the technologies are, “it’s going to be people making decisions.”Also, ultra-poor areas don’t have basic infrastructure, specifically the ICT facilities, needed to land these projects without substantial investment. Furthermore, the goal of agriculture development does not end in producing enough high-quality crops to eliminate hunger.

As the pillar industry and the solely income resource, agriculture plays a critical role in achieving economic development and empowering the disadvantaged poor in underdeveloped countries. Thus, without a free and well-institutionalized market with complete fundamentals, cultivation and harvests don’t necessarily bring higher income. These require joint efforts of government sectors, entrepreneurs, and civil society.


Read More:

World’s Largest Crypto Exchange Binance Announces All Listing Fees Will Be Donated to Charity

Global Artificial Intelligence and AI Agriculture Market (2018-2023)

How agriculture and climate change are related: causes and effects

Towards Smart Farming: Agriculture Embracing the IoT Vision

Digital Technologies in Agriculture: adoption, value added and overview

Indigo Raises $250 Million to Bring Tech to Big Agriculture

South-East Asia puts gene editing on the agenda

How technology will influence the farms of the future and change the way crops are produced 

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