It is very important to enhance and improve our farming practices with the ever-increasing global population. If we do not move to smart farming enough, feeding the people of our country will become very challenging. Not only the quantum of food required needs to be considered but at the same point in time, the decreasing availability of fresh water, diminishing area of arable land and most importantly – the changing climate needs to be considered.
To cope with the aforesaid conditions, modern farmers are adopting smart farming techniques and utilizing modern agricultural equipment and machinery. Intelligent techniques like precision farming, smart livestock farming, using weather and soil data, utilizing autonomous tractors etc. are being considered by farmers.
Precision or Smart Farming
Smart farming or precision farming is a concept which utilizes technology in order to provide a better yield. Farmers of the modern world do have access to data like weather forecast, soil fertility data, soil scanning etc. With the use of modern tools, a farmer can measure the variations within the given arable land and accordingly strategize their farming techniques. It would also help them to understand and estimate the usage of fertilizers and pesticide so that that the yield is brilliant. Farmers can also keep a track of the nutritional requirements of their livestock. In short, precision farming means maximizing output by optimizing use of inputs such as seeds, fertilizers, and pesticides.
Modern and Smart tractors
If we have to name a piece of traditional machinery associated with farming then the first thing which comes to our mind is a tractor. Tractors have been associated with farming since decades and now with the advent of technology, the modern tractors have a wide range of usage. It can be used for the process of tilling, plowing, seeding, landscaping, spreading fertilizers, cleaning bushes, harvesting and post harvesting operations.
Modern tractors can be categorized under three categories: -
Compact tractors – They are primarily used for the light processes like plowing, hauling, landscaping, etc.
Mini compact tractors – They are meant for general level activities like tiling, mowing, and small level landscaping activity
Utility tractors – They are meant for addressing the complex tasks of seeding, spraying, harvesting food crops etc.
Not only does the modern tractor provide a great range of usability but at the same time, the machinery with the help of modern technology has been made versatile to take care of different complex farming methods and the machines are powerful to take on the extra heavy tasks too.
In the last few years, we have seen the advent of smart tractors which can drive themselves in a straight-line using GPS capabilities, monitor soil and input parameters, detect plant disease, and adjust application rates using variable rate technology as required.
Aeroponics and Aquaponics
Aeroponics – It is one of the modern techniques of farming where plants do not require soil to grow. The plant roots are suspended in the air within a controlled environment which allows nutrient-rich moisture to get in touch with the roots of the plants. The process is cost effective and promotes ailment free production of crops.
Aquaponics – Under this type of modern farming, the plants thrive on a symbiotic environment where the plant is grown on water bodies where fishes are kept. The plants get the nutrients from the waste generated by fishes. The plants, on the other hand, clean the water by taking in the nutrients from the waste product.
These modern techniques of farming hold the key to meet the growing agricultural needs of our country. It is time we embrace them fully to enter a new era of agriculture.