Promoting Sustainable Agriculture Through IoT

Karen St. George, VP Marketing
04/19/2018

Sustainable development and agriculture go hand-in-hand. For any farming operation – regardless of size – preserving valuable resources is key to maximizing ROI. However, the need for greener practices is not only good for the environment and profit margins, but given the growing population and the need for more food production, sustainability is necessary to meet an expanding hunger crisis.

The Internet of Things (IoT) is assisting the agriculture industry to achieve its sustainable development goals through connected solutions that allow farmers to maximize yield and reduce the use of natural resources. Here are just a few examples of how IoT is making a ‘green’ industry greener:

  • Smart Irrigation – Through the combination of soil sensors and cloud-based data analytics, farming operations can monitor the moisture in the soil, which allows farmers to determine when – and only when – they should be irrigating. Connected systems automatically start and stop the watering process, which not only conserves valuable resources but prevents overwatering, which can be detrimental to yield.
  • Drones – Surveying crops by foot to gather data about yield, fertilization needs, water levels, and soil conditions is time consuming and sometimes inaccurate. Many in the farming industry have turned to the use of autonomous drones to capture crop images quickly and accurately, automatically sending them to headquarters. This allows farmers to make accurate remediation decisions that prevent small problems from becoming big problems.
  • Smart Greenhouses – Many in the agriculture industry are utilizing smart greenhouses to remove weather as an obstacle to higher yields and to promote responsible energy consumption. These greenhouses can be equipped with solar-powered IoT sensors, which can help control the environment and monitor water consumption. Sensors can also contribute to energy conservation by monitoring and controlling temperature, humidity, and light levels. Whether activating a mister or controlling the greenhouse’s thermostat, IoT is helping to shrink this farming method’s carbon footprint.
  • Data Collection – While IoT applications have real-time benefits that address current needs, perhaps its greatest advantage is the data IoT-enabled sensors are collecting. By gathering and analyzing IoT-captured insight, farmers have the blueprint for spotting inefficiencies they might not have otherwise seen. Armed with that data, they can fine-tune their operations even further to ensure planting and growing decisions to be even more sustainable each year.

Sustainability in agriculture is an absolute necessity, and IoT is helping farmers to increase yield while preserving the resources required to do so.

Looking to deploy an IoT application for the agriculture industry? Learn how KORE can help you launch it quickly and efficiently.

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