Why are we talking about the 4th agricultural revolution?

If we have to go back in time, we must above all remember that the first agricultural revolution was characterized by the advent of modern agriculture. Then, the second began during the industrial revolution when crop rotations changed. been introduced.

The third revolution took off with the discovery of synthetic fertilizers and genetic breeding techniques, accelerating the productivity of agricultural land.

Then now the 4th agricultural revolution with digital with all that is developing as applications based on ICT, in particular data (data).

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In reality, the agricultural sector today faces a multitude of complex and interdependent challenges marked, among other things, by galloping demographic growth coupled with climatic crises impacting productivity.

What solution to this double equation? The agricultural industry across the world is embracing technology to overcome these challenges that some call the “fourth agricultural revolution” or Agriculture 4.0.

Better understand the agriculture of the future

Improving farmland productivity to maximize production and meet changing consumer demands is at the heart of the new precision agriculture paradigm.

This revolution, it should be remembered, is characterized by the anticipated changes brought about by new technologies, in particular the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and autonomous robots.

These technologies can be used to harvest crops, pick fruit, weed, milk livestock and autonomously apply fertilizer.

They are designed to help boost agricultural productivity through more efficient farming practices. Precision agriculture involves the application of agrochemicals and water in a prescriptive manner to minimize waste.

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Experts believe that by 2030, improvements in rural connectivity and advances in 5G will mean that all devices in the agricultural ecosystem can be connected and continuously collect and store data on a network system. farm management for more efficient operations.

This will undoubtedly reduce and correct the agricultural labor deficit, reduce the number of natural resources needed and satisfy the growing demand for agricultural products, while adapting to the challenges of climate change.

The explosion of smart farms by 2030

Agricultural farms will get smarter as technology helps produce more food, on less land.

Smart farming incorporates, it must be emphasized, precision farming techniques that use sensors and imagery to monitor and maximize food production.

It combines the Internet of Things (IoT) and automation to create self-regulating microclimates for crops using sensors and control systems.

Farms will start collecting and monitoring large amounts of data from their operations, which will be fed into AI to automate growth.

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These principles will be applied to vertical farming systems, where crops are grown in stacked indoor farms so that more food is grown per hectare.

As 60% of the population will become urban by 2030, building these farms in cities will help eliminate food miles while maintaining freshness.

According to GlobalData, hiring for positions related to smart greenhouses has more than tripled since 2021. Advances in AI have reduced the need for human intervention and investments will only increase as the challenges facing the sector are faced call for greater automation.

Strong demand for agricultural drones

Agricultural drones are unmanned aerial vehicles used for yield optimization and monitoring. In 2022, drones can inspect and assess crop vegetation indices, which determine crop health, harvest stage, and soil nitrogen levels.

This information can help to normatively apply agricultural inputs according to the spatio-temporal needs of crops. But there is already rapid innovation in this area.

According to GlobalData, patents related to agri-drones have increased 14 times between 2015 and 2021. By 2030, they will become autonomous and modular.

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Modular innovation will mean drones will be able to perform advanced crop spraying and field surveillance.

These tasks are often unattractive to farms as they are extremely time consuming and the labor crisis and skills shortage will only increase the demand for agricultural drones.

By 2030, agricultural drones will be supported by greater rural connectivity and more localized regulation.

Accessibility challenges

Although the many challenges facing the sector have created a perfect opportunity for the development and mainstreaming of agritech, problems remain with its uptake.

Farmers need to be digitally savvy and understand how best to use these technologies, and many farmers may be hesitant to adopt new technologies.

Farmers need to become cyber-aware, as the increase in devices connected to agricultural ecosystems exposes them to cyberattacks – and the reliance on food supply chains also makes farms particularly attractive targets for cybercriminals. .

Technology is certainly offered as an answer to improve agriculture, but note that there will always be obstacles for future farms in 2030.


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Why are we talking about the 4th agricultural revolution?

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