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Artificial Intelligence In Indian Agriculture

Introduction

artificial intelligence

Agriculture plays a growing and going role in everyone’s life and the economy at large. Its importance for an individual can be as his/her livelihood, for the country, its economy, and as a means of survival for the human hood. Agricultural exports account for 10% of India’s total exports and are the country’s fourth-largest exported major commodity category. Agriculture is so important, yet this low output-to-input ratio reveals massive systemic problems in India’s agronomy, causing considerable misery for agriculture and allied labourers who face the impact of growing input costs, diminishing productivity, climate variability, resource depletion, inadequate market access, technological immobility, and so on. The agriculture sector is increasingly looking at methods to harness technology for improved crop yields in order to stimulate innovation and entrepreneurship in agriculture. Technological advances are helping to boost agriculture overall productivity much further. AI and other disruptive technologies are having a significant positive impact on Indian agriculture.

While India’s farming crisis requires attention on numerous levels, this article stresses the importance of innovation – specifically, artificial intelligence (AI) – in raising agricultural productivity and, as a result, farmer livelihoods.

How can AI be used in agriculture?

application of artificial intelligence

In India, the application of artificial intelligence (AI) in agriculture may encourage mechanisation. Precision agriculture would help to increase productivity. The use of technology in agriculture will enhance farmers’ market access, products, data, advice, credit, and insurance. Data that is both fast and reliable, as well as data that can be used for analytics, can help establish a demand-driven, efficient supply chain. Agricultural data can be gathered and merged with meteorological data, soil health card data, and mandi prices to help build prediction models that can significantly improve seed, fertiliser, and pesticide decisions in both the pre-harvest and post-harvest stages utilising sensors, pictures taken with phones, IoT devices, drones, and satellite images. The majority of these AI models are low-cost and low-cost, with the potential to add significant value to the agricultural environment.

Impact of Artificial Intelligence on the Agriculture Sector

Impact of Artificial Intelligence on the Agriculture

Artificial intelligence in agriculture is divided into three categories: robotics, soil and crop management, and livestock farming. Its goal is to make farming simpler, more precise, lucrative, and fruitful for farmers. The global AI in the agriculture market was worth US$ 240 million in 2017 and is predicted to grow to US$ 1.1 billion by 2025. In addition, challenges like population expansion, climate change, and food security necessitate novel approaches to increasing crop output. As a result, comprehending AI’s application in agriculture becomes essential. By 2050, the globe will have to grow 50% more food. To accommodate this goal, unfortunately, only 4% of extra land will be put under production. At a time where the global needs to produce more food with fewer resources, AI has the potential to drive an agricultural revolution. Essential Artificial intelligence in agriculture at various phases of the agricultural process can pay off for farmers in terms of increased profitability and revenue. 

AI in Indian agriculture has the potential to improve farm production, alleviate supply chain restrictions, and expand market access. It has the potential to benefit the entire agriculture value chain. By 2026, AI in global agriculture is expected to be a $4 billion opportunity.

Main Areas where AI can Benefit Agriculture

AI For Agriculture
  1. Monitoring of Crops and Soils

     With the use of sensors, cameras, and infrared rays that scan the soil for nutritional qualities, AI can be used to monitor soil health. This also aids in determining how individual seeds react to different soils, the effects of weather changes on the soil, and the likelihood of disease and insect dissemination. With this information, farmers can improve the efficiency of their crop inputs, resulting in cost savings and increased productivity.
  2. Crop sowing or predictive agricultural analytics

    When it comes to crop sowing, AI is mostly utilised to drive predictive analytics to identify when and how to seed. Based on climate data, historical conditions, market circumstances for inputs and outputs, personal information, and other factors, it assists in creating forecasts about the best time to plant, apply fertilisers, harvest, bale, till, and so on. Crops can likewise be sown at equal intervals utilising AI-assisted machines.
  3. Efficiencies in the Supply Chain

    Although AI has yet to make significant inroads in agricultural supply chain management, its informed use in supply chain planning and optimization, including demand forecasting and logistics, can save farmers a lot of money and alleviate the knowledge asymmetry problem for buyers.
  4. Harvesting Crops

    Crops can be categorized as per pre-determined grades at harvest season, saving time and improving crop quality. AI, on the other hand, is likely to transform the way agriculture employs labour. Although traditional manual jobs will be replaced, AI will open up new work options.
  5. Controlling weeds and pests

    Weed infestations have been observed to cause losses of up to 90 per cent of overall crop productivity. Pests have also been blamed for average losses of up to 19 per cent. As a result, pesticides are used more frequently, damaging the land and groundwater even more. Insecticides and pesticides account for about 5% of the entire cost of agricultural inputs, and this cost is increasing both in percentage and absolute terms. As a result, AI has a lot of potential in precise weed and pest management.

The Benefits of Using AI in Agriculture

Using AI in Agriculture

Farmers may better grasp data insights such as temperature, precipitation, wind speed, and sun radiation by using artificial intelligence in agriculture. Data analysis of historical values allows for a more accurate comparison of planned results. The greatest part about deploying AI in agriculture is that it won’t take away human farmers’ jobs; instead, it will help them better their operations. 

  1. AI allows for more effective production, harvesting, and distribution of important crops.
  2. The focus of AI application is on identifying defective crops and increasing the possibility for healthy crop output.
  3. Agro-based enterprises have benefited from the advancement of Artificial Intelligence technology, which has helped them run more efficiently.
  4. Artificial intelligence is being applied in applications like automated machine adjustments for weather forecasting and illness or pest detection.
  5. AI solutions have the ability to alleviate problems that farmers confront, such as climate change, pest infestations, and weed infestations that diminish yields.

Given the advantages of artificial intelligence for sustainable farming, adopting this technology may appear to be a natural next step for any farmer. However, there are still some significant limitations. 

Problems farms can face while adopting AI

AI Problem for Farmers
  1. Adoption of technology takes a long time

    Farmers must realise that artificial intelligence is a more advanced version of basic technologies for processing, acquiring, and monitoring field data. For AI to function, it requires a proper technological infrastructure. As a result, even those farms with some technology in place may find it difficult to progress.
  2. A lack of familiarity with new technologies

    Artificial intelligence agriculture could assist some locations, but it may be difficult to sell such technology in locations where agricultural technology is not popular. Farmers will almost certainly require assistance in implementing it.
  3. Concerns about privacy and security

    Farmers may face major challenges as a result of privacy and security issues like cyberattacks and data leaks. Unfortunately, many farmers are at risk from these dangers.
 

Artificial intelligence expectations vs. reality for sustainable farming

advantages of artificial intelligence

The advantages of artificial intelligence in agriculture are apparent. Smart farming solutions can automate simple, repeatable, and time-consuming chores, allowing farm employees to focus on more strategic activities that require human intellect. It’s crucial to note, though, that, unlike a tractor, AI cannot be purchased and started. AI isn’t something that can be touched. It’s a collection of technologies that are automated through the use of the software.

Artificial intelligence is a computer simulation of thinking that uses data to learn and solve problems. AI is only the next stage in the growth of smart farming, and its successful implementation needs the employment of additional technologies. To put it another way, before farmers can gain the full benefits of AI, they will require a technological infrastructure. Infrastructure work will take months, if not years, to complete. Farmers, on the other hand, will be able to build a solid technology ecosystem that will last the test of time.

Conclusion:

Farmers tend to think of AI as something that only applies in the digital world. They may be unable to see how it can assist them in working the real land. This isn’t because they’re fearful of the unknown or conservative. Their resistance stems from a lack of awareness of how AI tools can be applied in the real world.   

For the time being, technology providers must consider a few things: how to enhance their tools, how to assist farmers in addressing their concerns, and how to communicate how machine learning can help solve real-world problems, such as lowering manual labour. AI’s future in agriculture is certain to be beneficial.

FAQ:

    1. How is artificial intelligence used in farming?

Agriculture entails a variety of processes and phases, the majority of which are performed manually. AI can help with the most complex and routine jobs by supplementing existing technology. When integrated with other technology, it can gather and evaluate massive data on a digital platform, determine the best course of action, and even initiate that action.

    1. What is the impact of artificial intelligence on agriculture?

Artificial intelligence holds the potential to change the way we approach agriculture, allowing farmers to get greater results with less labour while also bringing a bevvy of additional benefits. Artificial intelligence, on the other hand, is not a stand-alone technology. As the next step in the transition from traditional to creative farming, AI can boost existing technology.

  1. What is artificial intelligence in agriculture?

  2. Artificial intelligence in agriculture will aid in the production of healthier crops, the control of pests, the monitoring of soil and growing conditions, the organisation of data for farmers, the reduction of workload, and the improvement of a wide range of agriculture-related jobs throughout the food supply chain.