See how Smartphone’s Apps will improve on-farm efficiency
“Apps are a modern implement that will position farmers for success and ensure sustainable nutrition for consumers globally,” said David Bergvinson, chief science officer of at the Global Agriculture Innovation Forum.
Apps are available for farm planning, fertilizer applications, pest and disease control, market access, financial services, weather, and yield metrics.
“Apps are important today because they allow us to address this challenge that’s been in agriculture for a long time — that agriculture is a data-intensive enterprise, yet most farmers around the world are operating in a data-poor environment,” Bergvinson said.
“Apps offer farmers access to localized recommendations that help them improve farm operations, reduce their risk and enhance their ability to manage natural resources — ultimately increasing their profits and freeing up time.”
The most popular apps offer location-specific and timely recommendations to farmers.
Bergvinson shared an outlook about the future of apps in the ag industry.
Artificial Intelligence will optimize farm operations and increase net return.
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With this comes the need for increased data security and governance. “The last thing we want to do is betray the trust of farmers with these new apps,” Bergvinson said. Data must be managed and curated responsibly.
He sees an evolution of end-to-end services that bring together micro-apps and connect them so that farmers’ operations are seamlessly integrated, Bergvinson said.
Apps will help with tracking of environmental, social and governance metrics. “Increasingly, supermarkets are being asked by consumers how they are responsibly sourcing food,” Bergvinson said. “That goes back to the farmer.” Apps can help farmers capture this information that will then allow them to access premium markets and increase profitability.
Contracted services, such as tractor rentals, can help farmers reduce costs. Apps can help farmers with mechanical logistics, Bergvinson said.
Integration of financial services is critically important in modern applications, Bergvinson said. “This is accessing credit based on profiling of farmers with mobile services and also being able to access weather-indexed insurance based on past production history, environment and crops,” he said.
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The Next Generation:
Apps are a tool to bring youth to agriculture. “Youth will see the modernization of agriculture via, in part, applications,” Bergvinson said. “They’ll see agriculture not only as a profitable business, but one that’s also attractive. One they can feel good about in producing nutritious food for their communities.”