IoT in Agriculture

Last few days we are talking about use of IoT in agriculture and its impact. There are many IoT (Internet of things) firms coming up with new projects supporting advancements in agricultural field.

Libelium is one such company with an extensive experience in Smart Agriculture and uses platforms like Waspmote Plug&Sense which enables tracking of environmental parameters such as farming, vineyards or greenhouses. It has been used successfully in projects like increasing crop quality in tobacco and preventing pests in olives. With an applicability in countries like Italy, Indonesia, Slovenia, Switzerland, Australia and others, it has been used for a variety of crops.

Others such as Link Labs, Thingworx, have been providing IoT architectures to benefit the agricultural industry. Using the IoT platforms for agriculture, it enables resourcing and mapping, monitoring crops, climate and livestock.

In India, Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has developed an android which collects real-time information to assess the damage to agricultural crop due to hailstorm. This app aims to allow the farmers to process faster claims to insurance during crop damage by accessing real-time data. It currently applies to rice and cotton crops in the states of Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana and Maharashtra.

Farmobile, OnFarm, CropX, FarmX and farmlogs are also included in the list that manufactures the devices needed to develop a connected farm.

India faces various challenges while applying IoT in agriculture. To begin with, internet connectivity and availability is one of the major challenges. Then there are certain other aspects such as presumption amongst the vendors about Indian consumers not being ready for the advanced products. This results in drastically low awareness of IoT devices and systems amongst consumers. That’s not all, the infrastructure required for smooth functioning of the IoT devices, such as smart grids and traffic systems are far from ready, hindering the growth furthermore.

Inspite of all the challenges, there has been a tremendous popularity in the agricultural circuits about the benefits of smart farming and the applicability of IoT. It has been looked upon as a hope to encourage innovation in agriculture with connected farms speculated to be the future of farming. Government initiatives like ‘Make in India’ and ‘Smart India’ can be utilized to make the best of our agricultural potential.

Thus we can conclude that  IoT can bring broad efficiencies to the agricultural space, and create a virtuous cycle that makes food products more readily available to consumers, saves farmers time and money, and lessens the environmental impact of farming by driving sustainability into the process.

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