By 2050, it is estimated that the population will increase by 2.2 billion taking us to 9.7 billion people across the globe. That’s a significant number of people to feed, clothe and house at a time when natural resources are on the decline and urbanisation and environmental damage is happening on an unprecedented scale. We have certainly recognised this and our awareness and insistence on environmental sustainability and ethical production are increasing all the time.
But what does this mean moving forward?
As a starting point, there needs to be a major shift in how we produce food-producing more with less. There are many ways that we can achieve this through digitisation and new technologies such as drones, connected machines, and field sensors. As these become more affordable, they create the potential for more efficiency in the agricultural world through innovation. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is becoming more commonplace and its use will accelerate significantly in the coming years.
Innovation in agriculture
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s) or drones have helped to make precision farming a reality. Capabilities such as infrared mapping to collate information such as crop condition could be achieved for as little as $5 per acre. Once collected and analysed, farmers can use the data to boost crop yields by as much as 20% By using this technology, surveys such as these can take just a couple of hours.
UAV’s are also implemented to aid crop dusting, seed sowing, weed and pest monitoring, and farm management.
It is also increasingly common practice for sensors to be attached to UAV’s that capture data relating to soil moisture levels, crop density, and health of the plants enabling farmers to be in the best position to make decisions on pest management, irrigation planning, and to get better yields from crops.
Small UAVs can also aid the visibility of the landscape in 3D to assist the farmer in deciding on the most productive placement of crops and water catchment areas. Previously carried out by larger aircraft, drones are equally capable in covering the same large areas and terrain, just without the need for intensive and costly amounts of people power.
So, what does the future look like?
Farm intelligence is a game-changer. Collating data and turning it into usable information will allow farmers to plan, monitor and make strategic decisions from paddock to plate in real-time, saving valuable hours and cost.
Going forward, AI software will analyse the data to identify what tasks can be performed by automation – spraying, mustering, harvesting, as well as predicting optimum harvest periods, packing needs and logistics requirements, all of which will impact the bottom line.
Globally AI in agriculture growth is expected at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 24% by 2024, with the Asia Pacific anticipated to be the biggest growth region. In fact, it’s estimated that AI could replace $32.4bn worth of people power and services in the agricultural industry*
With the constantly evolving technology and integration of AI, the agribusiness sector is in a fantastic position to meet the needs of the population it caters to whilst delivering on productivity, sustainability, and the bottom line at the same time.
Sage X3 Agribusiness solutions
With the potential for such a myriad of applications in play, the need to harness data, processes, and technology is critical to ensure seamless control and adherence to the strictest quality controls.
Sage X3 business management solutions for the agriculture industry seamlessly integrate all processes from planting to harvesting, packaging to marketing as well as sales management whilst providing visibility, traceability, and adherence to quality controls such as HACCP, ISO, etc.
Recogni/products/sage-x3sing the breadth of agricultural barriers in this industry, Sage comfortably addresses the varying needs in your Supply Chain, Retail Operations, Farm Management, Imports and Exports, Contracts and Financial Services, Trade and Human Resources.
For a more in-depth conversation on how Aptus Business Solutions and Sage X3 can support your digital transformation, please don’t hesitate to contact our Managing Director, Joe Gentile.