Growing more with less: how technology is transforming agriculture
The story of agriculture is a tale of relentless innovation, born from the pressing need to feed an ever-growing population in the face of dwindling resources. Throughout the ages, humans have tirelessly pursued new technologies to make farming more efficient and productive. From the humble plow to the cutting-edge precision farming equipment powered by global positioning systems (GPS), every generation has pushed the limits of what is possible in the fields.
But have you ever wondered how we will feed a world population that is expected to reach 9.7 billion people by 2050, according to the UN, and with 702-828 million people already affected by hunger, as per Unicef’s survey results. How can we balance this with the need for sustainable land cultivation practices that preserve the environment? In the midst of this struggle, however, there is hope.
In this article, we will explore the various ways in which the implementation of technologies in agriculture can benefit both businesses and environment. We will delve into the problems faced by the agricultural industry and the potential solutions that technology offers. Additionally, we will showcase the experience of companies like Modsen in implementing these solutions. Are you ready to discover how technology is revolutionising the world of farming? Let’s get started!
The Great Farming Challenge:
Using Technology to Ensure
Imagine this - You’re a farmer, working day and night to produce food to feed the world’s growing population. You’re facing a multitude of challenges, including unpredictable weather patterns due to climate change, pest infestations that can devastate crops, and the rising costs of farming inputs such as seeds, fertilisers, and pesticides. In addition, you may be struggling with limited access to water, land, and labor, which can all impact your productivity.
You know that in order to survive in this industry, you need to maximise your yields while minimising your costs. But how do you achieve this when the traditional methods are no longer enough? On top of all, you’re also falling under increasing pressure to produce food in a sustainable and ethical manner, with consumers demanding more transparency and accountability around farming practices.
This is where technology comes in. By incorporating digital tools and connectivity into your farming processes, you can gain a competitive advantage that could make all the difference in your bottom line. You can use artificial intelligence and data analytics to make better decisions about how to manage your crops, optimise your use of resources like water and fertiliser, and identify potential issues before they become problems. With connected sensors, you can monitor your crops and livestock remotely, giving you real-time insights into their health and performance.
The COVID-19 pandemic has only highlighted the importance of embracing digital transformation in agriculture. With supply chains disrupted and labor shortages, farmers who had already incorporated technology into their processes were better equipped to adapt to the new challenges. They were able to continue producing food and serving their communities even in the face of adversity. And going forward, with the world’s population growing exponentially, the demand for food will only continue to grow. Supported by technology, farmers can ensure that they’re prepared to meet this demand while remaining profitable and sustainable.
Tech for the Win: Solutions to Reshape the Agriculture Landscape
But it’s not just about farming anymore. Agriculture is a complex industry that involves a lot of different players, from the farmers who grow the crops to the agro-entrepreneurs who bring those crops to market. To stay competitive, all of these players need access to advanced digital tools that help them make informed decisions and optimise their operations.
So, what exactly can technology offer to the industry as a whole? One of the most exciting options is enhanced connectivity. It provides the foundation for other innovations in the field, giving farmers the power to use technology and build more sustainable and resilient businesses. Let’s check out some of the ways enhanced connectivity can transform farming:
IoT Technologies: Unleashing the power of data to monitor crops, livestock, and machinery, and making informed decisions using sensors and cloud analytics tools
Advanced Connectivity: LPWAN, 5G, and LEO Satellites providing growers with high-speed and reliable connectivity, enabling them to leverage advanced digital tools and analytics to optimise their operations and make data-driven decisions.
Precision Irrigation: Collecting data on soil moisture, temperature, and humidity, to apply water directly to the plants’ roots, reducing water waste, and increasing crop yield.
Livestock Monitoring: Tracking large herds of livestock and monitoring their use and performance to enable more efficient management of resources.
Autonomous Machinery: Operating autonomous machinery and drones for tasks like planting, harvesting, and more with the help of advanced digital tools and connectivity.
Smart Crop and Livestock Monitoring: Getting insights into the health and performance of crops and animals to enable more targeted interventions.
Drone Farming: Using drones equipped with sensors and cameras to monitor crop health and growth, identify pest infestations, and even perform crop spraying.
Smart Building and Equipment Management: Tracking the use and performance of remote buildings and large fleets of machinery, providing more efficient and cost-effective management.
Nevertheless, before embarking on a journey to explore cutting-edge technologies, it is crucial to lay a strong foundation with traditional tech solutions that are tailored to the unique needs of the agribusiness. The must-haves encompass data management platforms, supply chain management, and financial management software, among others. Employing these tools allows farmers and agro-entrepreneur to make well-informed decisions based on accurate data, optimise processes to reduce waste, improve product quality by tracking performance metrics, and manage risk more effectively by analysing market trends
For example, one of our clients, a US agricultural holding dealing with a wide range of crops, faced challenges in meeting demand due to supply chain bottlenecks. To address this issue, they implemented custom SCM software, which helped them optimise their processes and increase throughput by over 30%. Meanwhile, another client, a commercial farm located in the Central-European region that delivers agricultural products region-wide, reduced their production costs by an average of 23% by adopting a data automation solution built by the Modsen team.
These are just a few examples of the tangible benefits that technology can deliver for agribusinesses. By blending tradition with innovation and embracing technology, we can shape a bright future for agriculture. Join us in this effort and be a part of the exciting possibilities that lie ahead!
Building a Customised Tech Solution for Your Farm: Steps to Take and What to Look For
But let’s go back to our farmer simulation for a moment. Remember, you’re in charge of a thriving farm, yet you know that you’re not taking advantage of all the technology available to you. You’ve done some preliminary research and discovered that there are no off-the-shelf solutions that fit your specific requirements. You’ve realised that the best way to incorporate tech into your operations is to find a trustworthy IT partner who can help you build a customised solution. What steps will you take next?
The first step is to identify your needs and priorities. Are you looking for a solution for data management, supply chain management, or crop monitoring? Do you want to automate your processes or integrate new sensors and technologies? Once you have a clear idea of what you need, you can start searching for a technology partner who can help you achieve your goals.
You might be tempted to choose the first company that comes up on Google, but that’s not always the best option. You need to find a partner who has experience in the agriculture industry and can understand your specific challenges and needs. Look for companies that have a proven track record of delivering results for other farmers.
One such company is Modsen. We specialise in building and implementing custom software solutions for the agriculture industry and have helped numerous businesses improve their productivity, profitability, and sustainability. Our team has extensive experience in working with farmers and understands the unique challenges they face, such as unpredictable weather patterns, labour shortages, and supply chain disruptions.
Our experience tells us that the future of agriculture is full of opportunities for farmers, entrepreneurs, and technology providers. The need to feed the world’s growing population and balance it with sustainability has opened the doors to innovative solutions that can significantly change the industry landscape. The road ahead may be challenging, but with the right mindset and tools, farmers can create a better future for themselves, their communities, and the planet as a whole.