The agro-industrial complex is one of the spheres highly subject to digital transformation. But so far, in terms of the level of implementation of IT solutions, it lags behind other areas of the economy. Among the reasons are the unavailability of the infrastructure, the lack of qualified personnel, and the fear of change among traditional growers. In addition, not all farmers have money for new technologies. However, those who remain on the sidelines of the business transformation process face a loss of competitiveness.
The cost of wrong decisions in agriculture is very high and can often threaten with serious damage up to the loss of the entire yield or herd of livestock. To reduce the risk of errors and boost their farming business, farmers are increasingly using innovative tools and technologies at different stages of work. In this piece, we’ve gathered the most widespread and effective of those.
Modern agriculture implies the introduction of advanced information technology (IT) that will reduce manual labor and costs while increasing productivity and yields. Today, the use of IT in agriculture is not only about the use of computers. Digital technologies allow for controlling the full cycle of crop or livestock production – smart devices measure and transmit the parameters of soil, plants, microclimate, etc. Data can be collected thanks to advanced remote sensing possibilities from ground sensors, drones, robots, satellite imagery and be further analyzed by special AI-powered software available on mobile devices. Various mobile applications, including crop scouting apps, help farmers determine the right time for planting or harvesting, calculate the fertilization scheme, predict the harvest, and much more.
All of this enables farm automation and digitalization. Autonomous farms are more than just a convenience that allows farmers to sip coffee while robots do their jobs. It is a tool for reducing labor costs, increasing yield, and preserving natural resources while making agriculture a continuous 24-hour process constantly ready for threats and changes.
Eco-friendliness in agriculture implies the implementation of organic farming methods for obtaining agricultural products in which the use of artificial (synthetic) chemicals is purposefully minimized – fertilizers, pesticides, growth stimulants, feed additives, etc. As far as possible, they are replaced with natural analogs from green manure, and natural animal feeds ingredients to control through smart crop rotations and special methods of soil cultivation that require minimum or no-till.
There are two main goals pursued by the proponents of ecological farming. First, the food products obtained in this way are more useful and completely safe for human health, which cannot always be said about the products of industrial agriculture and animal husbandry. This is also especially important today since the consumer demand for healthier and more nutritious food keeps growing.
Secondly, organic farming causes minimal damage to the environment. Ideally, there should be no negative effect at all, but the fundamental feasibility of this is still questionable. This goal is equally important because, in the end, it also manages to protect the health of people and not just those who eat organic products.
The skill of gaining acquaintances is essential for any entrepreneur. Networking can help you grow your business and strengthen your brand. However, it is not just about talking to other people. It is about building and maintaining the structure of your contacts. It is a skill where you make the right connections and are able to keep the relationship on the right level.
Why is it important? There is a simple addiction here: the more people you know, the more likely it is that one of them will be useful to your business. For example, you want to attract new investors to your farm business. Who do you think is more likely to respond: the one to whom you were recommended or an unfamiliar investor? The first option, of course. The same goes for your product marketing. The more connections you have, the easier it will be. As a source of new valuable connections, businessmen can use their friends’ groups, social media, and relevant events.
The ability to change and adapt to innovations is invaluable in any business, and farming is no exception. Bridging digitalization with an ecological approach and smart networking can significantly increase agricultural business efficiency.
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