The discovery of farming is possibly what made early humans change from hunter-gatherers wandering the wilderness to settlers and communities. The ability to farm allowed our species to forge a foundation for villages, towns, cities – civilisations.
For something that is so ancient, you’d expect that we’d know all there is to know about it already, right? There are no more significant discoveries or incredible innovations to be found.
As amusing as that thought might be, it is hubris. The simple fact is that there are still innovations popping up in the field of agriculture.
One of the new things is coming from corporate giants like Panasonic and Sony. These corporations are making urban farms. Vertical and productive, these facilities are also doing something that you’d never expect when you hear the word agriculture.
They’ve gone soil-less.
Panasonic, Sharp, Toshiba, Fujitsu, and Sony are all using former facilities in Japan to grow lettuce. All of this is done without using any soil, instead of investing heavily in hydroponics. No-wash, no-soil vegetables grow at twice the speed of being cultivated in the field.
You can thank custom-designed LED lights for that.
Another innovation lies in the field of water efficiency.
Yes, most of the planet’s surface is water. Most of that water is of no use for everyday human use. Desalination used to be a costly and prohibitive process. It was simply too expensive and too inefficient to be used.
This idea changed when someone had the bright idea of using the only thing more abundant than seawater to power the process: sunlight. The use of solar energy to charge desalination machinery has helped dramatically reduce the power limitations. The tech is already seeing use in hydroponic farms.
Farmers who like their tech can also choose to look into drones.
Most of the time, we imagine drones in the military. Sometimes, they might be used as publicity stunts, like pizza delivery. However, with the use of flight mapping software, drones can also serve a function in agriculture.
An accurate flight map allows the drone to be used in fertilising a field. Precision commands allow a farmer to control how and where the fertiliser is applied. Yes, they can do this by hand, but a drone can do it faster once they understand how to get it done.
The precision involved also helps reduce the need for fertiliser and improves crop yield. This is clearly shown in Dubai, which is looking to expand agricultural drones so it can become self-sufficient regarding food.
Of course, all these innovations are just new ways of using existing technology. You’ll still need to know basic farming knowledge, like soil types and crop rotation. You’ll still need things like fertiliser and mulch – which you can get if you click here – to succeed.
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