HOW AGRI-TECH IS IMPROVING FARMING PROCESSES IN THE WORLD

by Olalekan Abdulsalami on 18 Apr 2019 • 5 comments
3 min read

Prior to the introduction of technological devices into agriculture, farm processes were carried out manually using tools like hand hoe to break hard grounds, sickle to cut weeds and rake to clean and clear topsoils. During this period, food production was limited and managing large farm areas was tedious and highly exhausting. Today, with the increase in the human population, this system of agriculture is highly unsustainable.

However, with the recent evolution of technological innovations, technology is taking over the modern agricultural practice. Farmers are adopting mechanized farming processes which is drastically reducing the limitations which have in times past, plagued the agricultural sector.

As further technological innovations continue to row the boat of modern-day agriculture, below are few ways technology is improving farm life in the world.

IRRIGATION PRACTICE IN AFRICA
Flood irrigation is the most common technique practiced by farmers in most part of Africa. Developing countries like Nigeria and Ghana are usually affected by unchecked desertification, insect and disease attack, among other environmental factors. But with the current irrigation practice in West Africa and the recent Precision Irrigation technology practiced in South Africa, extreme drought has been mitigated and farm yield has been enormously improved.

MECHANIZED AGRICULTURE
This process involves the use of machinery to easily carry out agricultural activities which greatly increases the productivity of a farmer. 

For example, a strawberry harvester (developed in the UK) picks fruit faster than humans. Its powerful algorithm allows it to pick a strawberry every two seconds while an average human picks approximately 15-20 strawberries a minute. Also, Agribotix, an agriculture data-analysis company in Colorado supplies drones that use near-infrared images to map patches of unhealthy vegetation in large fields. The images can also reveal potential causes, such as pests or problems with irrigation.

In addition, A Dutch company has also produced the Green bot; the first driver-less machine developed especially for professionals working in the agricultural sector who have to carry out repetitive tasks on a regular basis, such as working in fruit cultivation, horticulture, agriculture or municipal sector.

ANIMAL HUSBANDRY
Over the years, there has been a promising development of technological innovations in the area of animal care and production. This innovation has made animal husbandry easy, efficient and profitable. This can be seen in the use of FitBits for Cows; just like the way humans use trackers, the same type of wearable device can be used to check cows vitals such as their temperature, activity, and behavior (eating, sleeping, lameness, gait, etc) which in turn helps farmers improve cow health and comfort.
 
Also in terms of feeding, the use of Self-propelled feed mixer has helped dairy farmers feed their animals better and more effectively. Many research results support the idea that more frequent feeding results in higher feed intake and higher production as it improves the cow’s health condition and lifetime.

TECHNOLOGY HAS AIDED PROPER MANAGEMENT OF FARM PRODUCTS.
The incorporation of technology into farming has also allowed a smooth relationship between farmers and the buyers of their produce. As surprising as it may seem, the major buyers of the farmers produce, the agro-processors, manage their accounting process with these farmers on paper.  This means that farmers do not get paid for the crops they supplied to agro-processors on time because it requires a long, arduous and manual process. 

Crop2Cash has simplified and digitalized that process for the farmers and agro-processors making it easier to manage their commercial relationship together. Farmers get paid on time, and agro-processors can manage their accounts in a more transparent fashion.

Farmers and the consumers of their products need not live in close proximity before a service can be rendered if there is an effective supply chain process. This can be seen in the instance of coffee production. Most of the world’s coffee is produced in Brazil and Vietnam, but it is widely enjoyed all over the world. The logistics and technicalities involved in making this happen are possible by the virtue of technology integration into agriculture.

The United Nations estimated that, by 2050, the World’s population is angled to reach a staggering 9.1 billion. Therefore, feeding this number of people will entail ramping up food production levels by more than 70% in addition to reducing food wastage which we talked about in our last article. Technology has the ability to maintain the balance in food production provided the rate of technological evolution is kept on par with agricultural innovations.



REFERENCES
Technological devices on the farm. Retrieved from https://www.greenbot.nl/

 Using Technological devices for agriculture. Retrieved from  https://agribotix.com/

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5 Comments

  1. Hannatu Ladi Soni

    22 Apr 2019 AT 03:16 AM

    Aiding in the use of modern technology for the small holder woman farmer in Africa can increase the food production to mitigate hunger caused by the rapid increase in population.
  2. Olukunle

    22 Apr 2019 AT 16:51 PM

    Very good article. Hannatu's comment is very partinent. Women small holder farmers are very vital part of the production chain. Taking advantage of technology will definitely impact positively on production volumes and the attendant boost along the value chain. It is pertinent to note that technology may not be of the expected advantage to these groups because of cost of the machinery when viewed against the capacity of the individual farmer or even the cluster, to leverage on this unique advantage. Is there a way some of these machines can be designed with such people in mind, so that they can afford them? Can the processed of the technology be tailo-made to suit the small holder farmers, which are in the majority? What bearing will this shift have on cost? Are there specific crops/commodities that can be impacted by technology in our specific areas? Questions and more questions. But this made for very interesting reading. Thanks for sharing.
  3. Amede Achingale

    22 Apr 2019 AT 21:14 PM

    Good article.... Mechanized and modern farming methods makes equity crowd funding for agriculture more sustainable and profitable for rural farmers who lack funding and the knowledge of mechanized and modern farming methods.
  4. moreen

    21 Jun 2019 AT 09:07 AM


  5. Akpovwovwo Nyerhovwo Abijah

    28 Jun 2019 AT 23:11 PM

    This is nice

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