Automation is Transforming Agriculture
Traditionally, farming evokes images of hard labour and toiling in the sun. While that has not entirely changed, the people (or should we say “things”) doing the toiling and hard labour, are changing rapidly. We are fast moving to an age of automated farming, and not the type of automation you may imagine with big dirty machines and extremely costly infrastructure. Instead, by harnessing the power of AI, big data and existing and emerging technologies, the tech revolution is now coming to farms and its win-win for all.
What is Automated Agriculture and Why We Need It?
Any equipment that removes manual intervention in farming activities may be considered automated agriculture. Think harvesting robots, driverless tractors and sprayers and even drones that can track and eliminate weeds, help manage fields and even calculate expected yields.
“Technological advances are changing the way we work and AI powered robots and other technology have the potential to exceed human capacity and maintain consistency.”
Agriculture and food security are key areas of concern for governments and communities around the world. With a growing population, we need more food but fewer people are willing to work on farms. Furthermore, many farming jobs are often minimum wage jobs and may simply not be economical to widely hire for, thus leaving those jobs undone, which in turn reduce the efficiency of farms.
Technological advances are changing the way we work and AI powered robots and other technology have the potential to exceed human capacity and maintain consistency. Amazing leaps forward are being made in this sphere. For example, at Harper Adams University in Shropshire, autonomous tractors are being developed that can produce spatial maps of fields, which can then make it possible to plant, tend and harvest without human intervention.
Next-gen “agri-bots” may also not be big and dirty. In fact, they are more likely to be small, slow, light and autonomous. Working together and being interconnected, will likely be how they produce results.
When we discuss automation, there is always the looming fear of job losses and, yes, some jobs may be lost. But those individuals can go on to do better things with their time and for the jobs that do remain, which will be plenty, the people fulfilling those roles will have a much easier time of it, thanks to automation. Another significant benefit is that automation reduces costs, while concurrently increasing productivity, which will make the food we all need and love much cheaper, more plentiful and thus more accessible.
For more info: www.euroeximbank.com