According to the UN , Latin America and the Caribbean contributes 14% of world food production and 45% of net international trade in agri-food products. However, the crisis generated by COVID-19, added to the increasingly complex climate change, gave a strong shake to an industry valued at more than 5 trillion dollars worldwide.
Faced with this reality, the Mexican countryside has been one of the most affected, because in addition to the health emergency, it had to face a major drought which impacted approximately 70% of the territory. Data that put on alert and call to take care of each available resource to avoid an even greater crisis.
To help improve the complex scenario that the fields are going through, technology has allowed the development of solutions that optimize not only work, but also resources. Thanks to the deployment of Artificial Intelligence in agriculture, growers can have real-time data on what is happening on their land. However, this is only the tip of the iceberg. Next, Mario Bustamante, CEO of agtech Instacrops , comments on three benefits of digitizing the field:
1. Decisions based on real-time data
Through the use of cutting-edge technology and artificial intelligence algorithms, real-time data can be obtained to guide farmers in making strategic decisions regarding their crops. By incorporating AI-based solutions it is possible to have information on key parameters, which helps farmers to better prepare for various scenarios, such as weather events, resource shortages or pest or nutrient problems in crops. In this sense, platforms such as Instacrops, take to the mobile phone of the users, recommendations based on the interpretations of the data obtained to enhance the performance of the plantations.
2. Efficient production times
The consulting firm Gartner estimates that by the end of 2024, the use of technological tools will accelerate work time up to 20 times. Although it is difficult to visualize the automation of such manual work as that of the field, the truth is that there are user-friendly software, easy to use and very useful for farmers. For example, through multispectral images, it is possible to know the optimal state of the plants, stress problems caused by deficit or excess of humidity, weeds, pests, diseases, even if the plants have a normal green for their growth. All this information allows the farmer to make decisions that contribute to get the most out of his crop and streamline the entire process to harvest in the indicated time, obtaining better results.
3. Sustainable agriculture
The demand for food production will continue to grow, in fact, it is expected that in the next 30 years it will increase by 70%, so it will be necessary not only to be more efficient in production, but also to limit its impact on the environment. For this reason, agro-technologies are tools for sustainability in this sector to become a reality in our region.
Currently there are sustainable agricultural models that offer multiple benefits, but these models can be complemented with technologies that allow us to increase the level of communication that exists between nature and food producers. For example, by monitoring parameters such as soil humidity and temperature, water consumption, electrical conductivity, ambient temperature and dew point, among others, it is possible to save up to 35% in irrigation water consumption. within the property.
Now more than ever, the recovery and protection of this sector requires the evolution of traditional processes to make them more efficient and sustainable. Innovation has led to the fact that some daily processes in the field, such as the counting of plants, localization of problems of excess or deficit of water, nutrients, pests, weeds, among others, can now be carried out from the cell phone. The implementation of solutions is not only an evolutionary factor, but also to face the challenges and needs of our present.