Technology has always played a crucial role in every industry in our country. The agriculture sector is no exception to this. This industry is gaining tremendous benefits from several modern technologies that are arising. Ranging from the flying drones to Artificial Intelligence (AI), technologies are affecting the industry in a positive way. Right from the field to the very end, i.e., post harvesting, every stage of agriculture is now technology based.
Here are some latest technologies that are reforming the agriculture industry.
Agricultural drones are simple, yet effective technological tools in the production field especially in terms of time and manpower. Drones eliminate wastage of time by quickening activities. They are also quite cost-effective and hence would relieve the farmer from a lot of financial strain. Agricultural drones are very much useful for farmers in monitoring crop growth and allows to take necessary steps for increasing the production. So many innovations are being made to agricultural drones, which has made them very easy to use and profitable as well. Companies have begun to manufacture a wide variety of drones with specific and unique features.
India’s massive agricultural potential can be best utilised by increasing productivity through timely and cost-effective field work. To make this possible, agricultural mechanisation plays a principal role. Today, most of the agricultural activities are mechanised to a large extent. Highly advanced technology-based machines are being used by all, including small and marginal farmers.
In light of this, the government of India has introduced schemes such as the Sub Mission on Agricultural Mechanization (SMAM). Under the SMAM programme, the government ensures the reach of farm mechanisation to each and every farmer in the country, including those in the regions where availability of farm power is low. Furthermore, it creates hubs for hi-tech and high-value farm equipment. It also creates awareness among the target section, i.e., the farmers through demonstration and technological displays.
Information Technology and Artificial Intelligence
India’s agriculture sector has picked up its pace in synergizing the benefits of Information Technology and Artificial Intelligence. It is adopting the usage of both of these advanced technologies. With the help of AI and IT, this sector is now advancing rapidly in spaces like satellite monitoring, data analytics and weather simulations. One such major area that has been impacted by both these technologies is ‘precision agriculture’. This area involves collecting and analyzing data at the individual plant level.
The Indian agriculture ministry is playing a key role in this space. India’s agriculture industry is now using satellite imagery and other such large-scale data gathering systems to arrive at the actual crop yield and production capacity from an area. This approach has been intensified by the government and action plans have been prepared by the country’s space agencies to actualize the full potential of technology and align the agricultural policies in India.
The agriculture sector has always been backward in the financial aspect. We frequently hear cases of debt traps and credit loops. Fortunately, this is now taking a positive turn.
The synergy of agriculture and financial technology is slowly picking up pace in the agriculture industry. This space, dominated by startups, is beginning to show its effect on the agriculture sector in terms of shift from the credit system, digitalising their finances and so on. Many startups are offering counselling as well as advisory services to farmers in the rural areas, along with financial technology and cloud-based applications.
Post-harvest is a crucial element in the agriculture industry and currently poses a great requirement for low-cost technology. Being highly prone to natural calamities and external factors, the post-harvest space of the agriculture industry is highly volatile. Here’s where the post-harvest technology plays a critical role. To be more specific, post-harvest loss reduction technology reduces the losses in packaging, handling, transportation and storage with modern infrastructure, latest machinery, thermal processing, and low-cost preservation techniques.
Another interesting factor of post-harvesting technology is that it has the potential to create rural industries. It has the capacity to transform a farmer from a mere cultivator to a tech-processor and a machine operator!