A lot of work is required for harvesting, managing, and planting agricultural products. Unfortunately, farmers all across the globe find it difficult to find adequate workers for their fields. There are some experts who blame the pluri-annual decline in the number of immigrants coming to the developed and developing economies for seasonal work. On the other hand, others believe that the challenging demands of agricultural work can’t be matched with by the aging population of employees.
Irrespective of why farmers can’t keep pace with the demand, the tech companies provide a solution to the farmers that requires very little from the workforce. Farms can be turned into new generation of agriculture robot, instead of depending on human employees. As per the Research Dive analyst review, the agriculture robot reduces the time and decreases manual workforce as they work intelligently and autonomously.
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The New Generation of Agriculture Robots
The modern agriculture has been always relied on machines in order to make work more efficient and easy. Even the smallest farms use harrows, plows, and cultivators. However, the novel generation of agriculture robot has a higher level of sophistication, which makes the automation possible. There are a number of robots available in the market that do more than automate harvesting and planting. This agriculture robot uses artificial intelligence to improve a farm’s success by making better decisions.
Improving Crop Yields by Controlling Weeds
Farmers and scientists are well known with the fact that nearly 250 weed species have developed acceptances to herbicides. North America’s corn and soybean growers will lose nearly $43 billion a year to lost crops if herbicides unexpectedly stopped working.
A See & Spray robot from the Blue River Technology is solving this problem. The agriculture robot uses computer vision to identify weeds and patrols the farmland. The robot directly spray herbicides on the invasive plants as soon as it encounters a weed. It is estimated by the company that its precision technology of spraying can decrease the amount of herbicide used on farms by nearly 80%.
The species can be prevented from developing resistance of herbicide by using sophisticated agriculture robot to spray on specific plants. This would help in keeping the chemicals out of waters reach, which will eventually improve environmental conditions. Currently, the producers of cotton are the only one who have tasted the fruits of See & Spray. However, it would be interesting to see the advancements in technology, which will be useful for farms that grow other types of crops.
Harvesting Agriculture Robot Reduces the Need for Manual Workforce
With the younger generation showing no interest in farming, it is quite doubtful that the agriculture industry will be flooded with more workers. Thus, purchasing harvesting agriculture robots is a practical option for farmers, which will reduce the human efforts in farming.
When vegetables and ripe fruits sit in the field, insects, weather conditions, and time could make the crop unusable. There are several companies in the agriculture robot market who have already developed and designed harvesting robots to harvest crops at the right time, and increase profits. An AI-equipped robot of Panasonic Company determines the ripeness of tomatoes by using image recognition and also collects them.
Intelligent Agriculture Robot Improves Crop Yields and Soil Quality
According to the USDA, poor soil quality reduces yields and lead to unhealthy plants. Every year, around $44 billion is the cost paid by farmers for soil erosion.
Companies like PEAT and CropDiagnosis have built apps that help farmers improve and diagnose unhealthy soil conditions. These apps use GPS technology and imaging to suggest useful solutions and diagnose problems. Although, this technology cannot act without a proper human guidance, but it’s only a matter of time.
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The Future of Agriculture Robots
With the planet’s rising population, the dietary needs cannot be met with today’s agricultural practices. It is estimated that more than 9 billion people will need vegetables, fruits, dairy products, and meats by 2050. The United Nations states that farmers will need to increase the food supply of the world by 28% to feed those 9 billion people.
The agriculture robot will play an essential role in meeting the dietary needs of the future population. Innovations may include robots that maximize the amount of milk from cows, pollinate plants, and use intensive practices in farming to shrink the amount of required land for growing food.