What is Precision Agriculture?



Precision agriculture (PA) is a farming management that observes, measures, and responds to intra-field variability by continuously measuring crops' change in a high technology environment or via equipment. This includes irrigation management, planting, fertilization, pesticide application and the management of other operations. PA aims to match agricultural needs with crop needs (fertilizer inputs, irrigation need, etc.) and prevent pollution through compliance with nitrogen permit limits.


HOW DOES PRECISION AGRICULTURE WORK?


PA aims to use new technologies to boost crop yield and increase profit while reducing the amount of traditional inputs (water, fertilizer, herbicides and pesticides) required to grow crops. In other words, farmers implementing precision agriculture practices manage less input to grow more. Plus, inputs applied according to specific needs of the soil, crop and weather conditions increase productivity. In short, PA enables farmers to spend less and produce more products/crops.


WHY DO WE NEED PRECISION AGRICULTURE?


Traditional agricultural practices focus on land. A general group of crops is grown on that land. All farmers follow the same procedures during planting, feeding, irrigation and harvesting periods for that land. These practices result in unpredictability, excessive use of resources and uncontrolled waste generation.


Before agrotechnology, producing a good crop was like flipping a coin for a farmer. There was no way to find out the reasons for the crop loss as the farmers did not have any idea about their farms. This practice has resulted in loss and debt for the farmers. Advances in artificial intelligence, big data analytics, IoT and accessible satellite imagery have been tackling the unpredictability problem of the agricultural industry. Farmers can develop fertilization plans specific to their crops, soils and locations through these technologies. They can instantly calculate irrigation amounts specific to their location and crops with mobile device software as well.


According to the McKinsey analysis carried out on FAO data, 32% of food loss occurs in developing economies at production.


All-purpose Benefits:


  • Product production costs (Input Costs) reduce.

  • PA obtains maximum benefit from fertilizer through the most appropriate fertilization for the product, soil and land.

  • Irrigation management helps to achieve savings in water and energy use.

  • The product efficiency is kept at a certain level. So, the impact of price volatility is minimized.

In a nutshell,


PA is the adoption of highly precise practices that use technology to meet crop-specific needs.

Using hardware-independent software (satellite technologies, artificial intelligence, big data analytics) applications such as ImeceMobil or robots like drones helps you (I) to determine the fertilization and irrigation needs of your soil, crop, location, and weather conditions peculiar to your location, (II) to develop plans, and (III) to choose products.


It reduces input costs and boosts crop productivity, leading to a debt-free life for farmers.


Murat Civelek

İmeceMobil Entrepreneur

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