In agriculture computers help farmers become more efficient and grow more crops faster than they would have without the use. The latest technology has helped farmers all around the world to grow crops in a shorter amount of time and at the same time grow more crops. The effectiveness of this is incredible especially in places where most of the food eaten is grown on local farms. Some of the technology that helps with the efficiency and production are satellite technology and robots that help the farmers produce more and harvest more efficiently was classic farm equipment.
Production is the number one goal for farmers in order to gain more money each growing period they have. One way in which production is improved is through production records. Production records “Tracking inputs and outcomes are similar concerns for grain farmers, cotton farmers, vegetable farmers – all farmers – and there are systems now that will automatically correlate individual animals or parts of the field with inputs and outcomes” (Ganzel). Production records take previous statistics from past years or periods in which they grew a certain crop on the farm and compare it to where you grew it, when you started growing it, the weather conditions for that year, etc. This helps farmers determine which would be the best way and most productive way to grow crops and be the most efficient they can. Another way in which this statistic helps the farmers is that it can compare the soil that the farmer has on their farm and if they are rotating crops which soil currently has the most nutrients and would be most beneficial for the crop at the time of growing. Another way in which production was improved by computers is financial planning. “The average farmer will sit down at his or her computer over the winter (or sooner) and plan out the next year’s operation. How much of what food or fiber do you expect to produce? What will the actual inputs cost? What price do you need to receive for the product in order to provide a reasonable profit, and do you have futures contracts in place to assure that price? How much do you expect to earn through which government programs? What about crop insurance? The list of questions can seem endless, but they have to be asked and answered so that the farmer can go to the banker and get a large operating loan for the year” (Ganzel). Financial planning helps farmers decide what to do with the money they have left from the previous crop they have grown. This also helps them with choosing what to spend it on and comparing prices from one place to the next. It also helps you figure out how much food you will produce the following year and how much revenue you are expected to bring in and how much money you will find within government programs and if you need to meet certain regulations in order to be applicable for it. When choosing what to buy in the following year it helps farmers compare prices in order for them to get the best deal on the product whether that be from seeds or new equipment to help their farming become more efficient and productive.
Satellite Technology is one that you would not expect farmers to use, but it is one of their greatest options to use. One way in which satellite farming is utilized is “It is the use of a wide variety of tech – GPS, robots, drones, sensors – to increase knowledge and efficiency in agricultural practices. A more efficient farm will be more sustainable as farmers require less energy, and less fertilizer to gain better outcomes” (Wipperman). GPS is used to scout out the bestareas of your land in which you might not have used in a while or to determine whether or not that piece of land is yours or not. Drones and robots are used to get a closer look at hard to reach places. Sensors are really important to farmers and can be used in a variety of ways. These ways consist of how much did it rain, how tall are the crops at the moment, have there been any animals eating the crops, and if there has not been any rain, to relay the message on and to have farm technology to water them. While using satellite technology you can use mapping. Mapping is “understanding how large areas of land are used for different types of agriculture” (Wipperman). While using mapping you can determine which crops your land would grow best and how to utilize your land to the fullest. Whether that be the placement of the crops, to the location in which you use, or the amount of land you can afford to use with the amount of money you put into buying the seeds for your crops. Mapping is probably the most used tool because farmers want to know their land and have a visual reference in which they could go back to in times that they might need to access that information. Another tool in which you can utilize with a satellite is measuring. Measuring is “Plugging satellite data into complex algorithms to provide measurements on a range of properties, such as yield and crop growth stage” (Wipperman). Measuring helps farmers predict what will happen on their land during this time and know how to effectively use it for a profit. It can easily be translated into what crop you should grow and how much attention it will need. Furthermore, measuring could be used to grant the farmers a higher confidence rate when growing the crops that they will make their money back and not be worried that they just threw it away or bet against a bad situation. Finally, the last key function of satellite use is monitoring. Monitoring is “Over time, images enable scientists and farmers to see how land use has developed, or spot changes in rainfall and drought patterns” (Wipperman). With this information farmers can gauge what they have on their farm, and if they plant certain crops, it will help them dictate the placement of those crops. It will also show you whether or not if the land needs to take a break from being planted on for a long time and that in order for them to get better results.
Robots and automated equipment are some of the most commonly used gear when it comes to farming. a. “Agriculture is already heavily automated and mechanized. In fact, the sector has shrank to less than 2 percent of the labor force in the U.S., surely due, in part, to the rise of the machines. And that includes harvesting. Field and row crops such as potatoes, wheat and corn are often gathered mechanically” (Gossett). There are many automated tools in which can better farmers time and money. It has become more cost efficient, and effective to use these tools compared to real human labor. This equipment has killed the workforce for most farm hands, unless very skilled in the field. Almost all of the crops are picked with automated machinery because it costs less than hiring farm hands and is also more efficient in the way that it harvests crops. Some other jobs that automated machines do on farms are watering the plants, processing grain, and planting the crops. There are certain large watering machines that are hooked up to hoses and are then automatically passing over the crops at calculated times giving them a good evenly distributed amount of water in order for them to thrive. This saves farmers so much time rather than doing it all manually.
Farming has drastically improved when technology has. It has been made more efficient and dependable because of the technology. Production has gone up by a lot due to the fact that there is production management and financial planning. These have helped improve farmers life being they have become more financially stable due to these and finding out what government programs they are eligible for and to make more money. Satellites is a really important tool to farmers because it helps them plan out what they are able to do for the year and they can get their schedule out ahead of time and improve the quality of their products and perfect their craft with where the plants should be located. Finally robots and automated equipment had made their jobs farm more easy and sustainable because they do not need to hire farm hands and can be more productive than what they were before. It is way quicker to use the machines and is more consistent than a human worker would be.
Gossett, Stephen. “How Root Ai’s Agricultural Robots Are Powering the Farmtech Revolution.” Built In, 19 May 2020, https://builtin.com/robotics/harvesting-robots-agriculture-root-ai.
Whipperman, Angela. “This Is How Farmers Are Using Satellites to Enhance Adaptation.” Global Center on Adaptation, 12 Feb. 2021, https://gca.org/this-is-how-farmers-are-using-satellites-to-enhance-adaptation-2/.
Ganzel, Bill. “Computers as a Tool.” Computers as a Tool on the Farm, 2009, https://livinghistoryfarm.org/farminginthe70s/machines_12.html.