IoT helps agriculture become sustainable

Al Sisto

Blog by: Al Sisto - 11 / Feb / 2022

In 2019, nearly 2/3rds of all companies had already rolled out IoT applications. And that’s true across all sectors including agriculture. According to Embedded, “A recent market research report predicted that the AI agriculture market would see a compounded annual growth rate of 28.38% between 2019 and 2024.” As a result, IoT is helping shift farming from unsustainable methods to greener pastures. But how is it working? What is the benefit as IoT helps agriculture become more sustainable? We’ll explore in this 2-minute read.

What is IoT?

You might be aware that the internet of things (IoT) comprises a system of sensors, cameras and other connected devices that communicate together and with a central hub to provide real-time information and support machine & human decision making. And an expert implementation partner  can help you to scope and deploy your IoT framework for the largest return on investment. But you might not be aware of its far-reaching applications.

How does it apply to agriculture?

Farming can -of course- benefit from more data, faster. In the agricultural sector, the Internet of Things (IoT) is already helping farms become more profitable, competitive and eco-friendly. For instance, the real-time insights IoT offers supports both a reduction in pesticide usage and the conservation of water and energy. This allows farmers to be not just leaner in their operations and more productive, but also to comply with increasingly tighter regulations. Some of these benefits are already being realised for farming operations that have already implemented IoT.

How is it helping agriculture become sustainable?

There are many ways that IoT can support farming’s green agenda. Some of these are:

  1. Tech-supported greenhouses - Weather has a huge impact on farming but smart greenhouses can eliminate this crop risk. Not only can they use renewable energy, but they can self-regulate that use for less energy waste.
  2. Drone support - Drones make it easy to analyse water levels, yield, soil condition, pest control and more. With machine learning, this drone-gathered info can be interpreted and changes made to the conditions without the need for human input.
  3. Data-driven decisions - Kore reports, “By gathering and [analysing] IoT-captured insight, farmers have the blueprint for spotting inefficiencies they might not have otherwise seen. Armed with that data, they can fine-tune their operations even further to ensure planting and growing decisions [are] even more sustainable each year.”
  4. Automated prevention - Not only can drones identify crop requirements, but they can also execute them. Automated fertilising or pesticide rounds can be triggered by machine learning and activated in autonomously-controlled flight paths to meet the real-time needs of crops.
  5. Better rotations - According to IoT World Today, “In the autumn, after harvest, farmers need data on soil condition so they can replenish fields. IoT sensors on planters now provide data on which nutrients a field needs in real-time". Having that data in real-time, rather than weeks later, allows farmers to get ahead of weather issues and other potential disruptions in replenishing the soil.


Topics: IoT, IIoT, agriculture, sustainability

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