Agriculture Technology – The Evolving World of Agriculture
Agriculture technology is an umbrella term containing a multitude of techniques, tools and equipment all designed to increase production and productivity. There are many types of agriculture technology. One example is integrated farming, which is the practice of combining sophisticated agricultural techniques with traditional management methods. Agribusiness, or the production of food, is another important type of agriculture technology.
Agriculture is one of the world’s largest contributors to greenhouse gases, as the demand for food increases. With all the world’s land suitable for cultivation being used, many say that there is simply no more room for croplands. The use of pesticides and fertilizers has been the main cause of this. With this in mind, there is an increased need for agriculture technology that will help increase crop production and control the rate of soil erosion.
One of the most important areas of agriculture technology is hydroponic gardening. Hydroponics is short for water gardening and involves growing plants in nutrient-filled water solution. Traditional farming techniques include crop rotation, application of fertilizer, and the use of chemicals. Organic farmers say these techniques not only pollute the environment but also result in the over-farming of land, killing off natural wildlife that is essential to healthy plant growth. Other problems that can occur include soil erosion and loss of organic soil, as well as respiratory and other health issues for farmers working in traditional farming.
Many farmers, in fact, say that their work could be affected by advances in agriculture technology. For example, some say that diseases not commonly seen in traditional farming, such as the famous pink sheet disease, are becoming more common in modern agriculture. Some say that pests have become more resistant to commonly used pesticides. This, they contend, is leading to more frequent use of toxic pesticides, resulting in greater environmental pollution than ever before.
Agriculture is one of the sectors facing real challenges from climate change. Temperature changes, drought, floods, and extreme weather events, as well as the lack of fertile land due to the intensive use of chemicals, have led to a rapid decline in crop production in many parts of the world. Farmers, in turn, have turned to agro-chemicals to help them fight these problems. However, many chemical fertilizers are harmful to the soil and do not have the desired effect. In addition, farmers are continually buying newer technologies, such as genetically modified (GMOs) seeds and pesticides, because they are perceived as more effective.
Another area of agriculture technology that has been developing for years is agriculture’s indoor vertical farming sector. Indoor farming is the practice of growing food in containers, such as plastic buckets or metal feeders, indoors in spaces very similar to that of a traditional farmer’s field. There has been some success in using these methods to increase yields, although there has been a huge increase in seed prices and crop damage due to pests and disease. Despite this downside, it is clear that there is great interest in developing new methods of indoor farming.
Other agriculture technology developments have helped farmers avoid some of the challenges presented by climate change. Climate change is posing major challenges to global farming. Farmers are finding that pests, disease, and water shortages are becoming much worse as the planet continues to warm at an alarming rate. New advances in agriculture technology are helping to increase food production efficiency by reducing the time and effort needed to care for crops, increasing crop yield and quality, and reducing water consumption.
There are a number of agriculture technologies in development. The best-known is sophisticated irrigation systems which can be used to reduce water loss from already waterlogged fields. Other innovations include improved animal feed products for livestock, fertilizers, pesticides, soil precursors, fertilizer systems, and even biofuels such as ethanol. In addition, farmers are adopting a greater reliance on hydroponics systems to provide the fruits and vegetables that consumers demand. These advancements in agriculture technology are likely to continue to be refined and developed for the coming decades.