There was a time when farmers spent all day working hard in the fields and agriculture had nothing in common with software development. But nowadays, the numbers say the opposite. Monitoring and forecasting crop yields have seen 18.4% annual growth, farm mapping shows 16.7% growth rates, and record-keeping has gone up by 17.8%.
The agriculture industry drives the economy of most countries, adding around 4% value to the world’s GDP. And today, the domains of the fishery, crop cultivation, forestry, and livestock production heavily rely on solutions of agriculture software development for business growth. Let’s take a closer look at how exactly these different types of software benefit farmers.
The Benefits of Using Software Innovations in Agriculture
By utilizing technology in agriculture, farmers can maximize field productivity, increase yields, control the influence of weather on crops, detect problems on fields, and support the fertility of the soil. Moreover, a software tool allows farming businesses and small farmers to process their operations on the fields without leaving home.
A great number of applications that fall into the category of Precise Agriculture monitor the fields from space (satellite farming), drones, and other tracking devices to provide full information about the state of the fields for farmers. Another effective feature of most applications that deal with farm management is that if any changes happen on the field, the farmer will get a notification. However, it doesn’t mean that farmers need to travel to the field as they can use drones to indicate the exact geolocation and inspect the area.
These modern technologies improve the ability to estimate the number of fertilizers needed for a particular field, detect vulnerable or underdeveloped zones, and identify pest attacks. The software for the agriculture industry is a live journal for farmers where they keep a record of yields, analyze the effect of certain fertilizers, and monitor the soil fertility based on weather, precipitations, acidity level, and other factors.
Another crucial aspect that adds fuel to using software for agriculture is that farmers are able to conduct their activities in an environmentally-sustainable way. Humanity is becoming more and more eco-oriented, and now 56% of consumers would rather buy products from organic farms. Such a considerable demand has led to over 186 countries adapting to organic farming by using software and managing natural resources wisely.
Types of Software Innovations in Farming
Farmers don’t just invest in technologies to save time. They also benefit by getting quality field images, predicting precipitation, detecting pest-affected areas, and other activities that boost crops and increase profits. Let’s explore the most useful and effective agricultural technology solutions.
Drone-Based Field Management
Owners of large and small fields are using drone systems for the following purposes:
- to spot weeds in the field
- to detect plants that require fertilization or treatment
- to supervise the overall crop health
- to spray fertilizers, herbicides, growth boosters
- to check soil moisture and acidity levels
All these functions are possible with the sensors that are installed on the drones. Using the mobile application that is interconnected with the device, farmers can see the live version of drone travel and stop it to take pictures if needed. Agricultural workers can also send the drone to a specific spot on the field to spray fertilizers or investigate the area using the GPS function.
Software to Process the Images
This software assists farmers to process the images taken either from drones or satellites. It helps to create high-definition pictures and get close-range shots for faster decision-making. It also makes it so much easier to compare the crops from the previous years, make conclusions on the field state and needs, and even predict the crop for the upcoming season.
Satellite imagery comes in two types: visible and infrared. Therefore, farmers usually need particular software that has numerous built-in tools to decode these digital pictures and allow farmers to extract them in the required format.
Sowing Planning Software Solution (Precision Agriculture)
Can you imagine the sowing season for hundreds of hectares done by the company manually? Farmers are not just using the best and cutting-edge machinery for seeding plants. Custom software installed in the crops trucks allows the farmers to calculate the number of raw materials needed for sowing. The software analyzes the moisture and fertility level of the soil, the presence of pests, and the amount of weeds to calculate the volume of seeds, maximizing the efficiency of resources, costs, and time.
Software for Ranchers
The livestock management system is especially handy when it comes to the organization of large numbers of animals on the farm, such as rabbits, goats, poultry, etc. By using complex and multi-functional software, a rancher can keep track of the number of animals, their health, and the costs of management, make notes on their development (weight, fertility, productivity), and calculate estimations from their sales.
Irrigating and Crop Monitoring Software
The second important stage in agriculture is to keep a close eye on the health of crops, including providing enough water resources for different types of crops and making sure they receive the necessary amount of fertilizers. Applying the exact amount of resources needed is necessary to ensure the highest quality end product possible. That is why farmers constantly and carefully, throughout the whole season, check the soil to prevent it from dryness, add nutrient-rich fertilizers, and irrigate the crops.
With all the specter of benefits that innovations in agriculture technology bring, large and small scale agricultural businesses across the world are willing to purchase software to manage problems with pets, save water resources on irrigation, smartly apply fertilizers, and develop their business. These time-saving tools have fundamentally changed the whole agricultural industry making it easier and more profitable.
Interesting related article: “What is Organic Farming?“