“Are you on regular milk or alternative milk?” – today, this question has become so clear and familiar that we no longer consider what kind of alternative it is. Alternative to natural products! Alternative milk, alternative meat, protein bars made from insects, food from a 3D printer – this is all our reality today. Or the near future.
Read about what technology works wonders and automates the processes of creating the products that we consume now and every day – read our article. You’d be surprised how technology and neural networks are now being used not only for resources like luckylife.in but also for preparing essential foods.
To supply the market with agricultural products, to do so with maximum benefit for themselves and without harming the environment, farmers are increasingly resorting to the help of various technologies. Now they are optimizing and automating all work processes.
- Artificial intelligence on farms and plantations. Modern farms are no longer just farms. They are becoming “smart” and use not only workers’ labour but also various technical devices.
- Temperature and irrigation sensors. The most important thing for any plantation is water management. To create favourable conditions for plants, gardeners use temperature and irrigation sensors. All devices are different – the choice depends on the requests of farmers. There are devices not only for huge farms but also for small home gardens. The most advanced devices work from a wireless network. They automatically collect plant information and send the data to a tethered device. Whether a shrub is drying out, yellowing, or covered in patches, the gardener knows about it all at a glance. In addition, there are extraordinary developments for irrigation (i.e., artificial irrigation of areas of land where there is no moisture) of growing crops. Sensors installed in plantations collect all the necessary information and transmit it wirelessly to a computer. In this way, farmers can remotely irrigate plants depending on their condition. The system helps to use water resources wisely.
There is a term “precision farming” for fertilizing individual plants. It just means that a unique approach to each plant is used to produce a quality crop. That is, the farm is not cultivated as whole but individual areas that need it. So if just one bush for the entire farm needs watering or fertilizing today, that’s what gets done.
Identify problem areas and areas to water by GPS.
A GPS helps identify difficult areas of land. By capturing satellite images, the farmer can see where to add fertilizer and where to cut back. In addition, it allows them to plan how resources are used on the plantation.
GPS systems also help spot problems in some regions of the field, pests, etc. This way, agrarians can immediately respond to the problem and prevent it from spreading.
In the era of digitalization, agriculture is not without apps. Especially for farmers, digital platforms are being developed that analyze data from sensors and drones (we’ll talk about them later). The platform’s algorithm compares this data with climate forecasts, creates field maps, and then can predict the yield of each plot and even calculate the cost of production. And the apps also help make an individual maintenance schedule for each plot of land.
Aerial photography from drones
So, drones. Previously, farmers personally checked each plot of land and the condition of each animal. Farmers’ knowledge was only sometimes enough to identify and respond to a problem in time. Now many farms and plantations use copters with computer vision. They monitor every plant and animal, can fly long distances, and descend to a specific object on the farm.
In practice, it is helpful in that the device detects a sick or damaged plant and sends all the information to the farmer. It helps to react quickly to changes and, in some cases, even to prevent an epidemic.
Face recognition: farmers and cows.
Video surveillance systems are used all over the world. Facial recognition helps make purchases, search for missing persons and reduce crime. This technology is needed not only for urban safety and comfort but also to improve the quality of products.
Farmers also use facial recognition. But not for people – for cows. With a 3D scanner, farmers can monitor cows’ health and quickly identify a sick individual. Installed in a specific location that cows pass through every day, the scanner analyzes the condition of each animal. As a result, it helps identify cow diseases early and reduces mortality by 50-75%!
Moreover, it is necessary to monitor the cows’ daily activities to ensure that the animals are properly and well fed, live actively, are in a good mood, fall asleep on time, etc. If a cow is tired or malnourished, the farmer will get an alert on his phone. Why do I need it? The lifestyle of the animals directly affects the quality of the product (be it milk or meat). Improper nutrition, fatigue, or illness affect the taste of the product and, consequently, the volume of its sales and the producer’s reputation. And all of these factors also affect the profit of the farm.
It is also necessary to monitor the condition of farm workers – after all, the animals can also become infected by them. So people at the livestock farm are 3D scanned as well.
Tomatoes like in Italy: farms with different climates
The remote format has proven beneficial not only for company employees but also for products. For example, computers can now remotely create the climate of any country to grow plants.
In a shipping container, special electronic sensors can maintain a specific temperature, amount of sunlight, soil moisture, and other parameters. Manually adjusting the climate conditions can improve the taste of the food and preserve its nutritional value.
More and more people are giving up animal proteins. But the body still needs these substances and somewhere to get them. To solve this issue, technologists are looking for alternatives. One of them is insects, which contain almost 70% protein. Please don’t be frightened; you won’t have to eat them in their usual form. Arthropods are recyclable and can be used in various products, from animal feed to baby food.
This direction in the food sector is relatively new but has already become a trend and is considered promising. The main reason is economic: raising cattle is much more expensive than raising flies and insects. Against this background, new startups have already appeared that produce protein powder from different kinds of insects. For example, one Israeli company uses locusts and dried insects; another team uses fruit flies.