Smart technology has revolutionized many
industries, and agriculture is no exception. As the global population grows and
climate change impacts the natural growth of crops, smart tech will play a
crucial role in agriculture for future generations. Modern innovators are constantly
developing new ways to improve the health of plants and boost the efficiency of
In this article, we’ll explore some of the
ways that smart tech has, and will continue to, transform the future of
agriculture. From the Internet of Things (IoT) and advancing software to
smarter modes of transportation and data collection, new technology is helping
farmers and other agribusinesses work smarter, not harder, in our changing
the Supply Chain With IoT
IoT devices are increasingly playing a role in
bridging the gap between physical and digital worlds. While agriculture was
once an industry that was exclusively filled with manual processes, today’s IoT-based
systems have made it possible for companies to better secure the supply chain
and support rising demand.
By using IoT monitors and sensors to adhere to food safety standards and reduce the risk of human-borne contamination, agribusinesses reduce waste and keep supply strong as demand grows. These same devices, which can help regulate planting conditions, are also paving the way for effective vertical farming, a practice in which crops are grown on top of each other rather than on a flat field. The IoT and vertical farming empower farmers to produce more crops in a shorter time span — an essential step for feeding a growing global population.
Resource Management with Technology
Resource management is a critical part of helping every business make the most of its time, supplies, and budget. Thanks to the advancement of resource management software, many companies are able to easily forecast their future needs, as well as measure and optimize their resource utilization rates — all using repeatable workflows that can be automated to save time. However, in the agriculture industry, modern technology is perhaps most effective at improving the allocation of resources available to a team.
Resource management tools empower agriculture
businesses to schedule the right employees at the right time. Smart software
takes each worker’s skill sets into account, along with the types of tasks that
need to be performed, to help companies maximize productivity.
Beyond optimizing labor, smart technologies like drones and satellite imagery are helping agricultural workers more accurately identify where fertilizer is needed, as well as what needs to be done to keep livestock and crops as healthy as can be.
Agricultural Use Cases for CRMs
Customer relationship management tools (CRMs) were once predominantly used in the sales and marketing space as a means of keeping track of basic information about clients. However, as CRMs and agriculture have become more heavily intertwined, agricultural leaders have found additional ways to use this ever-improving software in their businesses. For instance, many companies are using CRMs to track various, industry-specific aspects of accounting, from grain contract cancellations to customer credits.
CRMs that are specifically designed for agribusinesses can even contribute to better analytics. Advanced agriculture data like field yields and pest records can all be entered into a CRM to offer a better overview of an operation. Agribusinesses can use this data to grow the perfect amount of crops to distribute to customers, rather than growing too little or a surplus.
Technology Grows Smarter
Smart technology in the agriculture industry isn’t always a brand-new concept. It’s often an improved version of existing technologies that’s designed to reduce human error and improve efficiency. For example, autonomous tractors use GPS and sensors to drive themselves and plant crops efficiently across a field. This can help agriculture businesses reduce the impact of labor shortages, while also saving time and fuel in the planting process.
Similarly, unmanned aerial vehicles (or
drones) are being used to spray large fields with pesticides in short periods
of time. All agribusiness workers need to do is refill their tanks and ensure
they stay charged, saving a significant amount of time and human labor.
Even irrigation systems are getting smart
updates that reduce the amount of water used in the farming process. This can
make a huge difference in water consumption as the world battles climate
change, especially in areas affected by droughts.
Real-time Data to Improve Crops
IoT devices and other smart monitoring
technologies are making it easier than ever to collect accurate, real-time data
about crops without any manual effort. Using this smart tech, agribusinesses
can monitor crop behavior, from the rate of crop growth under certain conditions
to the potency of seeds with certain characteristics. It can even closely track
water and nutrient usage to offer a complete view of which resources are being
used in the production process.
As data is compiled over time, smart technologies can offer accurate predictive analytics that help agribusinesses optimize their farming processes. Farmers can produce higher-quality crops that are more resistant to local weather conditions and more valuable to consumers. Plus, they can better predict the right harvest windows to minimize the amount of waste on the field.
Using AI for these analytics allows agribusinesses
to sift through massive amounts of data and draw insights in a matter of
minutes — significantly faster than the average human.
Technology Is Changing the Agricultural Industry
Smart technology is transformative for every
business, but it holds particular importance in the agriculture field as demand
grows and weather conditions fluctuate around the world. Using IoT and smart
monitoring devices, agribusinesses can secure the supply chain with less waste
and optimal growing conditions. Plus, as existing tech like drones and tractors
grow smarter, agricultural workers can complete far more tasks (like spraying
pesticides and planting seeds) in much less time.
Farmers can also use smart software to
allocate their resources in a way that produces less waste. Similarly,
advancing CRMs can help agribusinesses ensure they’re growing the right number
of crops for their customer base by combining data from the field with customer
data. Future smart technologies are sure to bring even more opportunities to