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Revolution of farming 

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The use of traditional manual tools for planting seeds has been a matter of the past for a long time and as the trends indicate, it will continue to decrease steadily. In this sense the wave of digitisation and technology has caught up with the agricultural sector and is facilitating farming with innovative tools that focus on data-related information. This digital shift has especially led to an enormous change in the way breeders work. The interactive encounters with the seeds, such as feeling the soil or planting by hand, moved strongly towards technological knowledge such as reading data sheets.

Tools of digital agriculture

These innovations affect numerous functions involved in cultivation. For instance, soil classification is one of them, as sensors can be installed to detect changes in the soil in order to adjust the recipe for sowing to ensure that the modified soil has no impact on the crop.

In addition to soil analysis, different data streams such as disease modelling and weather information including rainfall, temperature and humidity are combined and analysed to establish a correlation between the two information streams allowing better treatment or even minimisation of many diseases. Ultimately, drones are used especially in the Asian region for planting seeds, because in this case, 5kg of rice could be brought down to 120 seconds by aircraft instead of requiring 25 minutes of work by two farmers. 

Why should a company undertake an innovative shift? 

With the help of these mentioned tools and artificial intelligence involving algorithms, sensors, cameras, data collection and analysis, a predefined growing setting can be ensured. 

As a result, the shift of digitalisation brings many benefits, starting from sustainability. By permanently monitoring the seed as well as the soil, the ideal demand of resources such as water, heat, humidity and other nutrients can be optimised. Thus, the use and waste of our natural resources as well as the crops, can be reduced and the sustainability including the carbon footprint as a whole can be enhanced. Alongside this, an increased production and quality can be guaranteed based on the evolving life cycle and treatments that are optimally adapted to the crops using all the existing data.

A company like BASF, has already decided to take this digital step. Intelligent systems for the needs-based dosing of fertilisers and the intelligent application of seeds are already in place in the company. Additionally, the partnership with technology companies, BASF has been able to take quality and experience to a new level. This includes the use of autonomous growing software and hardware for hydroponic lettuce and tomato. The expertise that companies are now relying on has shifted from plant know-how to data analysis.

In this sense, the interaction of human knowledge as well as the step into the digital world is the key to success in any field. Nevertheless, if there is a lack of human resources within the company alongside the digitalisation, contact us. We will find the right person to fill the job with the relevant knowledge.

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