Forecasts announce that the world’s population will rise from 7.3 billion to 9.7 billion between now and 2050. Those people will not only need to eat, they will want to eat better than people do now. This leads to an increasingly urgent question: how can the world be fed in future without putting irreparable strain on the Earth’s soils and oceans?
Smart farming is a solution that many farmers are turning to in order to address these issues and increase the quality and quantity of agricultural production. This solution involves the use of sensing technology, the Internet of Things and BigData to make farms more “intelligent” and more connected.
Currently, farmers use GPS, soil scanning sensors, data management systems, and Internet of Things technologies. By effectively combining these technologies, they are able to accurately measure variations within a field that help them design appropriate strategies. Therefore, farmers can greatly increase the effectiveness of pesticides and fertilizers, and use them more selectively. Similarly, using Smart Farming techniques, farmers can better monitor the needs of individual animals and adjust their nutrition correspondingly, thereby preventing diseases and enhancing the animals’ health.
Programs like the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 help innovative companies by offering funding in order to remove barriers to collaborative innovation, get new projects off the ground quickly and achieve results faster.