Precision Agriculture With Digital Ecosystems

Let us look at how digital technology and innovation has contributed to farming and agriculture:

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In precision agriculture, vital operational insight of the environment enables farmers to make informed decisions increasing their productivity and revenue. According to Accenture Precision Agriculture Services, depending on the crop precision agriculture can help increase overall profitability by USD$55 to USD$110 per acre. This is done by boosting revenue while minimizing expenses and the chances of crop failure via data collected on the weather patterns, soil composition requirements, pest management, and crop quality. Considering Accenture’s cloud hosted advisory system which aims to improve the productivity and effectiveness of agro-input company field agents, using mobile devices, cloud services and analysis of data collected via sensors, drones or even combine harvesters.

Accenture’s cloud hosted advisory system which can be accessed by the mobile devices of the field-agent or extension officers who represents the key link between companies and farmer. In the system, the agro-input supplying companies uploads their agricultural products and recommendations information. Whilst their field agents can collect and upload the farms’ demographic information and provides the test labs with the farms’ soil sample for testing. The testing lab then uploads the soil test analysis results to the advisory system adding to the farm information. Therefore, creating a value network between the farmer, soil lab, and agro-input supplier. In this value network called the Accenture Connected Crop Solution, the soil test results provide data for the field agent to confidently give the farmers personalized recommendations on the nutrient, moisture and pesticides required for a productive yield.

Agriculture is adapting to make the most of value networks

Creating value by facilitating a network relationship and interactions between the digital ecosystem partners for example field agents, farmers and agro- inputs companies. The partnership should also be based on the idea that both the farmer and companies providing services and products can grow together in the long term. Farmers see the benefit with agricultural knowledge leading to increases in yield and revenue whilst the company provides the needed inputs to boost the same. In the US and developing countries like Brazil, India and South Africa following suit, digital agriculture and value co-creation has been successful.

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Connected devices and farm activities

In investigating which other digital tools could contribute to the data provision for a precision agriculture advisory system. I came across very interesting uses of tech like drones which can digitally record crop performance, remote irrigation sensors that measure the soil moisture levels, robots. and they are not just used as scarecrows but used for planting, pruning grape vineyards and responsive harvesting.

A Digital Business Strategy (DBS) is at work in the agriculture sector contributing to the success of precision agriculture.

Sources:
https://www.accenture.com/za-en/insight-accenture-digital-agriculture-solutions
https://www.therobotreport.com/news/top-10-technologies-in-precision-agriculture

Dr. Albert Mubako

Dr. Albert T Mubako is an information systems consultant and business strategist . He is an author and developer of the digital business strategy (DBS) model which facilitates a strategically channeled digital approach to business challenges, how technology can be used to improve the way business operates and interacts with its customers. An academic thinker with business acumen, connecting the dots, and bringing it all together for clarity and action. Connect with him on Twitter :@tichatongam , email albert.mubako@institutedbs.com

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