The Agricultural Revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries saw a dramatic increase in food production thanks to new farming techniques and technologies. Today, we are on the cusp of another agricultural revolution, one that is being driven by the latest innovations in agriculture.
Recent developments in advanced farming technology have allowed for the co-mingling of smarter technologies and agricultural processes, which facilitates the use of artificial intelligence, robotics, big data analytics, advanced sensors, satellite imaging, and other latest agriculture technology in farming activities.
Among the various regions globally, North America understands the value of advanced farming technology the most. In 2021, the North American agricultural technology market value stood at about USD 6.2 billion, the region with the highest market value in the world.
This growing trend is brought about by the benefits that farmers reap from advanced farming technology. These include: increased crop yields, optimized efficiency of irrigation and other inputs, as well as strengthened agricultural production sustainability and resilience.
Read on to know how advanced farming technology is ushering in a new agricultural era.
How New Farming Technology Enhances Field Operations
Farming today no longer has to heavily rely on manual labor and guesswork. The use of advanced farming technology gives farmers access to precise yield forecasting, data-driven decision-making process, streamlined operations, and many others. Let’s delve deeper into the benefits advanced farming technology brings to the agricultural sector:
Provides Advanced Field Monitoring Tools
Satellite imagery and remote sensing are among the components of advanced farming technology. These technological devices capture real-time imagery as well as field data, which both aid in providing visuals and metric data about the health of farmers’ lands and crops.
Farmers can use this data to make knowledge-based decisions, such as adjusting their water systems, fertilizer inputs, and seeding or harvesting dates to ensure healthy crop growth. With advanced monitoring, farmers can catch problems early and avoid losing entire crops.
These two field monitoring technologies have also paved the way for improved autonomous tractor operation. Cameras and remote sensors enable autonomous tractors to operate in the field without the need for a human driver, as they detect farm paths and other obstacles in the field.
The global agricultural sensors market alone is expected to be increasingly utilized by farmers in the coming years. It is estimated to grow at a 15.4% compound annual growth rate to $9.79 billion by 2026, which speaks volumes about the benefits of these technologies.
Promotes Sustainable Field Operations
Advanced farming technology developments also brought the emergence of precision agriculture, which allows farmers to be more efficient in their use of water, pesticides, and agrochemicals. The efficiency is achieved through the use of sensors that detect the optimal amount of inputs that each crop requires, promoting sustainable operations by only using inputs as required by the field.
More specifically, precision agriculture comes with GPS-based systems that allow farmers to more accurately map their fields and target specific areas for treatment; remote sensing can be used to monitor crop growth and soil conditions in real-time; while yield monitors help farmers track production data so that they can make adjustments to optimize yield.
This level of accurate data and farm input administration from precision agriculture ensures that farmers grow healthy, high-quality crops. In effect: it increases the bottom line for farmers. This reason is also why precision agriculture is expected to be used by more farmers in the coming years. By 2026, the global market for precision agriculture is expected to reach 34.1 billion US dollars.
Lowers Production Costs
Farm production expenses, including farm operator living expenses, are forecasted to rise by $20.1 billion, or 5%, in 2022. This growth will bring farm production costs for the year to $411.6 billion, which would represent the highest production cost for growers.
This rise in farm expenses is associated with the expected increase in feed sales, fertilizer purchases, and labor costs. These typical farming operation costs can be reduced with the adoption of advanced farming technology.
The widespread adoption of smart farming technologies enables farmers to use their resources more efficiently, thereby assisting farmers in their cost-cutting efforts. Precision agriculture, for example, conserves resources by detecting the health of the soil and crops and accurately measuring and dispensing the optimum amount for the field.
Farmers can also improve the planting process by utilizing smart mapping technologies to detect areas with low plant density and plant more seeds in those areas. This results in lower seeding costs and higher harvest yields.
Additionally, robotic systems can be used for tasks such as crop picking, which reduces labor costs. These technologies have made it possible for farmers to produce more food with fewer resources.
Stronger Resilience Against Agricultural Challenges
The adoption of advanced farming technology can also be used to cultivate stronger farming resilience. For example, crop producers are able to address challenges in the agricultural industry, such as labor shortages, through the use of robotics, autonomous tractors, and precision farming.
These advanced agricultural systems allow farmers to do more operational activities autonomously, monitor the fields remotely, and receive accurate data on farm field health and weather predictions.
In addition, farmers can adapt faster and become more resilient to the long-term effects of climate change through sensors and satellite imagery, which provide access to up-to-date information on potential weather changes and other factors affecting their farming operations. This way, farmers are able to adapt their operations to changing weather patterns, as they can more easily adjust their irrigation systems and planting schedules based on real-time data.
Welcoming The New Age With Advanced Farming Technology
Advanced farming technology is becoming increasingly important in assisting farmers as they enter the new era of agriculture. By using technological tools and solutions that address modern challenges, such as climate change and water scarcity, farmers become more efficient and sustainable.
Precision agriculture, in particular, is proving to be a valuable asset for farmers who are looking to improve their operations. It provides accurate farm field data that traditional farming processes are unable to achieve, which helps farmers reap better yields while maintaining sustainable farming operations and reducing expenses.
Other advanced technologies, such as robotics and artificial intelligence, are also making inroads into agriculture. These technologies have the potential to revolutionize crop cultivation, management, and harvesting, making farming more efficient and productive.
Advanced farming technology will become increasingly important in assisting farmers in meeting the challenges of the new agricultural era. As agricultural technologies continue to evolve, it is clear that they will play a vital role in feeding the world’s growing population in sustainable, efficient, and cost-effective ways.
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