Farmcrowdy is an Agric tech company in Nigeria and in this post, we will show you the impact of technology on agriculture.
Not long ago, it would have been hard to predict a smart sensor that could read your plant health and detect nitrogen level in the soil. Fast forward to now, there are highly advanced tools and software for individuals and companies in the Agricultural space.
A 2012 study from the University of Kentucky found that precision agriculture practices can reduce a farm’s greenhouse gas emissions by up to 2.4 percent. No wonder a farm company is willing to spend $100,000 on things like Precision Agriculture upgrades.
But the wave in Agriculture is only just starting.
In another five years, the Agriculture industry is going to experience major shifts in its operation and everyone in the agricultural chain will be a part of it.
We know this because as an Agric tech company with a mission to empower farmers, our goal is to bring more agric education to farmers, especially to rural farmers in Africa.
In this article, we will show you how technology plays and will play a role in Agriculture.
How Technology Plays a Role in Agriculture
Communication is probably the greatest improvement that technology has caused across all industries.
Back in the days, farmers could only communicate with farmers in their community or at most, share ideas with farmers in neighboring villages who come to sell their farm produce.
With the advent of technology, farmers can create Whatsapp groups and learn from each other, share experiences, advertise their products, source for loans and do more.
2. Modern technology used in farming versus old farm tools
The use of agricultural machinery has drastically cut down the time it takes to perform farm activities and farmers are more productive than ever.
To give you an overview, it took farmers an average of three to five hours to till an acre of land manually using shovels or hoes. Today, using a 154-horsepower tractor and a chisel plow, a farmer can till an acre in five minutes.
When professional tools are used for farming, more farm produce can be harvested and it makes farming easier and faster.
3. Digital Farming
A few years back, it would have been impossible to imagine a scenario where people could farm using their mobile phones and laptops without having to be on the farm or doing any of the farm work and still earn while at it.
Now, farming has been made easier with the birth of digital agricultural startups. With the aim of putting an end to poverty, getting more people involved in agriculture and increasing the level of food production, these companies operate on a digital platform where people can sponsor farms and earn healthy returns while at it. These farms are sold at a given price which is used to fund the farming cycle and after harvest, the profit earned is shared with the farmer, the sponsor and the company.
Some of these startups includes Farmcrowdy (Nigeria), Pork Money(Ghana & Nigeria), Thrive Agric (Nigeria), Farm Kart (Nigeria ), CowTribe (Ghana), Twiga Foods (Kenya), Hello Tractor (Nigeria), UjuziKilimo (Kenya) and a host of others.
4. Farm education is affordable and accessible
Technology has made educating farmers easier. There are different ways to look at this. First, people are more enlightened about farming as a profession, and it has shifted the perspective of considering farming as a profession for people in rural communities or for people who have nothing else to do, to a profession that holds exciting prospects.
Since more youths are participating in Agriculture, they are able to get farming information on their mobile devices, regardless of location. For example, our farm sponsors comprise of people from all walks of life – think bankers, accountants, make-up artists, retirees, mums, and youths generally.
While it may still be difficult to pass information to some rural farmers due to barriers like language, several farmers have seen the kinds of yields they can get from using modern farming techniques and are more open to exploring new options. With technology, farmers can be handed devices that are pre-installed with farm training and can be watched over and over again.
4. Seed development
There has been a lot of breakthroughs in the field of seed development.
A more recent seedling breakthrough by the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) is the planting of yam leaves to produce millions of healthy high yield stems. According to Yam Seed System Specialist, IITA, Abuja, Dr. Beatrice Aighewi in an interview with The Guardian said and I quote “The aeroponic system is used to produce clean yam. It’s like growing yam in the air. What we plant is yam vine popularly called ‘stem’, to produce tubers for farmers to plant.
“We want seed companies to use this technology to produce seedling for farmers in large quantity. The advantage is that instead of losing a lot of tubers during planting, farmers can approach seed companies and get a bag of seedling to plant on a vast land.”
Technology and technologically process will continue to play a big role in seed development which has a direct effect on the agriculture industry.
How Modern Technology will Play a Role in Agriculture
The future is near for some countries than others. The ideas below may not be in Nigeria yet, but we are happy to dream up imaginary scenarios in the farming industry. Here’s what the future might look like:
- Welcome Robo-Farmers
We know. We know.
We absolutely love our farmers and we know they truly are not replaceable. However, we also know as farmers, technology can help us automate task and increase efficiency.
Robo-farmers will eliminate activities such as weeding, watering and trimming, and free up more time for farmers.
Specifically, in our dream, we hope the farmer can get some sought of remote control, press one or two buttons and send his army of robo-farmers to work.
- Everyone will be a farmer
Farming will be so easy that the only reason you choose not to farm will simply be because you choose not to. That is because from checking your soil texture, to planting, weed control and fertilizer application will be tech-controlled. You will have access to smart sensors that unlock by scanning your face. By blinking twice, the sensor will turn on the water sprinklers. You will preset a timer for when your plants should be watered, weeding and fertilizer application. Oh, you will do all these while watching TV or sipping a cold drink from the comfort of your living room. By spending just 30 minutes a day, you can grow food in your backyard for your family to eat.
- Trade-by-Barter Will Return
Since you may not be able to grow all you need as a result of limited land space, we will have to travel back in time to the days of our fathers where you will become friends with your neighbors or make use of your Linkedin network to practice trade-by-barter.
Okay, before you ring our office and shout it from the rooftop, asides the robo-farmers which are probably still years away, we don’t know know if everyone could ever be a farmer or if we as a nation could ever go back to trade-by-barter. But if any of these ever happen, you can always count on us to continue to advance our Agric tech platform and always be here to serve you.
Want to be a farmer? Take advantage of our platform which is technology-driven and farm from the comfort of your home or office. Click here to follow a farm and we will let you know when farms are available for sponsorship.
Want to be a Farm Manager and get hands-on learning experience with the team at Farmcrowdy? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will provide you with the details.