6 Ways in Which Technology Can Help Your Agribusiness
Technology has become increasingly important in the agro-industry, allowing growers to be more efficient in their operations and increase their productivity.
Successfully utilizing these tools will put your business ahead of the technological curve by enabling you to control your costs, grow your business, facilitate your decision making process and reduce your impact on ecosystems.
These digital tools can be classified into different categories based on their use and application, and we considered the six below to be the most relevant.
1. Farm management
Farm management software allows you to consolidate and control all of the data related to the operation of your agribusiness. These types of programs assist in the correct administration and management of resources, which can lead to an increase in production performance and more efficient cost controls.
There are a large number of agricultural management tools to choose from, including Agroptima, Agroint, Agricolum, and Campogest.
2. Weather forecast
Anticipating climate and adverse weather conditions not only helps to avoid losses in production areas, but also allows for better planning of growing activities. By being aware of phenomena such as rainfall, frost or extreme temperatures, you can optimize seeding, irrigation and harvesting dates.
There are several tools capable of performing these tasks, from those offered by Google and other search engines, to others that are more specialized for agriculture, such as the GlobalMet System and Yara’s app, FarmGo.
3. Irrigation management
Efficient water management is essential to the success of your business and tools such as Kilimo and Manna Irrigation can facilitate the design of an irrigation plan that will allow you to optimize your water usage.
4. Crop care and plant health
When it comes to crop care, digital tools can also be of great help, offering remote solutions to different problems that may arise in the field.
Several of these apps require nothing more than a smartphone camera to provide an analysis of the current nutritional status of the crop, as Yara does with its ImageIT app and Kali-Toolbox. These programs evaluate the nutritional status based on the appearance of the foliage and then offer a selection of products that can correct or improve this condition.
Other programs can also use your smartphone camera to detect pests and diseases, such as the Spanish application PlantCare, Agrio or Plantix, which offer specific solutions for their management and control.
5. Measurement, collection, and analysis of data
There are technologies that allow for the measurement and collection of data with the help of specialized sensors for each use, which can analyze the status of a crop in terms of humidity, temperature, yield, etc., in real time. In this regard, we can mention software such as Cropx and Climate FieldView.
It is important to acknowledge that both artificial intelligence and machine learning have become increasingly valuable to growers due to their multiple applications. Modern AI and ML programs can predict the behavior and yield of crops, achieve an automatically controlled environment, detect pests and diseases with simple images or manage autonomous systems that perform functions such as irrigation, fertilization or harvesting.
6. Agricultural trade
The process does not end when the product is harvested, since marketing is an essential aspect of any agribusiness. Growers must sell their products in a timely manner, while negotiating the best prices with trusted buyers.
This is where online marketplaces step in. Produce can be marketed on various digital platforms, but few are adapted to the needs of produce buyers or sellers. The Marketplace offered by ProducePay specializes in the agricultural sector by connecting verified buyers and suppliers of fresh produce and enabling simple and transparent transactions.
What is the best technological tool for agriculture?
Technological tools play a crucial role in modern agriculture, as they help growers improve the efficiency of their operations and make informed decisions. Of course, the best technology tool for agriculture is the one that meets the specific needs of individual growers or engineers, as each has its own pros and cons.
Here we present some examples such as Agroptima for farm management, GlobalMett for weather forecasting, as well as ImageIT for crop monitoring and ProducePay’s Marketplace for agricultural trading, but it is important to evaluate several options before choosing a definitive technological tool to make sure it is compatible with your specific needs.
Sources: IICA, Bayer & Forbes