Automated farming: good news for food security, bad news for job security?

Friday, February 19, 2016

Around the world, but especially in the developing world, food and farming systems continue to rely on 20th century technology. But this is changing. The same information technologies that brought us the internet and transformations in medicine are nowrevolutionising farming. It’s a new era for agriculture and it’s taking off in at least two distinct areas.

On the farm, technology is changing the way farmers manage farmland and farm animals – such as the use of satellite driven geo-positioning systems and sensors that detect nutrients and water in soil. This technology is enabling tractors, harvesters and planters to make decisions about what to plant, when to fertilise, and how much to irrigate. As this technology progresses, equipment will ultimately be able to tailor decisions on a metre-by-metre basis.

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