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What is The Future of Agriculture & Farming?

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Future of Agriculture

Agriculture is the backbone of societies across the world and in India, about two third of the population is dependent on the Agriculture sector. The population in India has touched 1.38 billion in 2020, which is 17.7 % of the total world’s population.

It has increased 3.35 times since Independence and by 2027 it is expected to surpass China to become the most populated country in the world and still India accounts for only 2.4 % of the Global land.

The average size of landholding per state is 1.08 hectares, according to the latest agricultural census and many farmers are facing several major constraints such as input supply, credit availability, proper transport and market facilities.

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The Global population is expected to peak at 9.7 billion by 2050, according to the experts and they predict that the worldwide production must increase by 70% within the next 30 years but the amount of farmland available per capita is decreasing day by day and to address this issue, Agriculture requires new approaches which would not only increase productivity but it would also ensure environmental protection and conservation of the limited natural resources.

Also, there is a looming threat of Climate Change and so the future of agriculture must need to be changed so as to meet the prevailing environmental and social conditions.

After the Green Revolution, the country introduced high yielding variety of seeds and fertilizers which increased the productivity of land considerably but the growth has been stagnant in recent years which has resulted in a significant decline in the income of farmers and also there has been some negative Environmental effects such as depletion of water table, emission of greenhouse gases, contamination of surface and groundwater. Therefore, we need to say that the Agriculture sector is in a state of distress and this is severely affecting the peasants and marginal farmers and there is a need for urgent policy interventions to protect their interests.

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So, What is the future of Agriculture and what technologies or innovations must the Agricultural industry adopt to fulfill the necessary food production goals? Well, We are going to discuss this here.

 Introduction to Future of Agriculture

 Agriculture is the livelihood of the majority of the population in India, but the GDP is regularly falling and it has fallen to less than 20% and other sectors are increasing rapidly.

The Rise in population and average income and the effects of globalisation is going to increase the demand for quantity, quality, nutrition and variety in the food and therefore we need to produce more quantity, variety and quality of food in the future.

India has a large variable land with almost 15 Agro climatic zones and it is capable of growing in almost all types of climatic conditions, soil types and variety of crops.

It is also getting better agricultural implements and various mechanised tools and we can access them for different farming techniques which will increase the crop productivity and maintain the fertility of soil, saving our time and effort. But we also need to take care of the field and crops along with the revolution in farming equipment.

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There has been a sudden rise in unnatural processed foods and people have become aware that it can eventually kill them and this has sparked a newfound interest in the agricultural sector and every consumer now wants to know from where their food is coming or being raised and how it is grown.

This has shaped the way for large and small farmers to plant, raise or track their product. Technology has played a massive role in allowing these farmers to manage their Farms and it also helps the consumers to learn more about the food they are eating.

According to the 2020 report of State of Food security and Nutrition in the world, about 14% of India’s population is still undernourished and the Global Hunger Index 2020 has placed India at the 94th position among the other 107 countries.

Achieving ‘Zero Hunger’ by 2030 is a humongous challenge in India and it needs an integrated and multidimensional approach for overall sustainable agriculture and food systems in the country.

Climate change and its impact in the form of extreme weather events is a very critical challenge for the country’s food security and it has been predicted that about 1 – 2.5 °C temperature is going to rise by 2030 and it will show very serious effects on crop yields and this high temperature may reduce crop duration and permit changes in photosynthesis, escalate crop respiration rates and can even influence pest population.

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It will also accelerate nutrient mineralization and Fertiliser Use Efficiency (FUE) and hasten the evapotranspiration in the soil.

Climatic change would directly or indirectly impact crop, water and soil and it will change the intensity and frequency of drought and would affect microbial populations, soil organic matter reduction, yield reduction and also the depletion of soil fertility as driven by soil erosion etc. and this would also create food shortages, nutrient deficiencies in humans due to inadequate intake of healthy food and would make humans more vulnerable to health issues.

Current State of Agriculture

Before starting with the future of agriculture, it is very essential that we understand the current state of agriculture and the challenges the world will have to meet in the coming years. We have been facing the Covid 19 pandemic which is still on the loop.

The pandemic has shown a light on the vulnerabilities that are faced by the industries and apart from this, the Quarantine, disruptions to the supply chains, border closers have limited the access to food countries to rely on and there has been an insecurity of food which has become an unfortunate side effect of the pandemic.

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Also, climate change is still continuing to be a problem for the farmers and some of the experts also point out that so much water is being used for supporting the current farming techniques. Also some chemicals are considered to be an ecological threat, so the farmers need to maximize their yields from the land they have and they need to ensure reliable outcomes out of it.

So this means that the future farmers should comprehend the limited landholdings, the perpetual threat of the extreme, unpredictable weather and requirement to use less water and less chemicals. Also, the future requires governments, investors and farmers themselves to come together so that they could change the way food is grown across the world.

Future of Agriculture

The environment is continuously changing so there is a need to get adapted to these so that the farmers can continue growing crops and raise livestock.

They need to change – crops they are growing, the methods of their growing, the timing of farming activities, how they manage the water use, and what kind of shelter of shade they provide to the animals.

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Technologies / Techniques for the Future

Technologies help the farmers save time and effort as it can be used effectively in other activities. The farmers therefore require to learn new techniques because the limited use of these new techniques has become a hindrance in the path of development of a more organized and productive agricultural sector.

There are some changes that could be made for the farmers which do not require any technical knowledge. They are:

  • Use of tractors instead of animals
  • Seed drills for increasing agricultural efficiency
  • Pressure spray to protect crops against infection
  • Sprinklers to evenly irrigate plants for a healthy and consistent growth
  • Implementation of existing machinery and improved agricultural equipment

With the years passing by, many more innovations have taken place in the agricultural sector and these new technologies also need to be developed to move towards a more efficient and productive farming.

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Some technologies that we need or that will be more common in the coming future are:

  • Enhanced Hybridization – Some short time hybrid seeds having intrinsic properties produce more in less time, saving water and adding resistance to diseases. It also reduces chemical use, thereby reducing chemical residues on plants.
  • Drip Irrigation – This method uses sensors and technology to target water and the crop protection targets on the basis of specific geographical needs and pressure from pests and diseases, as well as the needs of the plant life cycle. It saves water and it is a conscious solution for saving the farmer’s economy.
  • Precision farming (Smart farming) – During the growing season, many risks are involved and accurate farming techniques and technologies are really essential because it could help in eliminating uncertainty or future risks. Precision farming involves collection of data through integrated hardware such as tractors equipped with GPS sensors and it can also analyse the relevant agricultural analyses and the farmers can make specific actions for the field areas. It also helps the farmers to increase their crop yields and maximize efficiency.
  • Drones – Drones capture the crop area and manage the field processes. They help in identifying the pests and diseases and localise the use of agrochemicals. It also identifies the grasses and helps in changing the whole process of cultivation and harvesting. Also, their use could increase the crop yields by 15 to 20%.

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  • Digitisation – Digitisation in agriculture help agriculture to develop more and integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI), satellite imagery, sophisticated productive software can help the farmers to make some important decisions in real time which will save their time and money and it will also help their crops from the devastating effects of pests or extreme weather conditions.
  • Automation – There is always a constant debate that the future of agriculture can lie on automation and we know that the modern farming tools and agricultural automation can help the agriculture sector to smooth up the crop production cycle and make it more efficient and productive. Ex: Self driven Tractors.
  • Aerial Farm Management – This helps the farmers or growers to get the aerial image of the field so that they could better manage the crops. Drones and Unmanned aerial vehicles are exclusively used with various options where drones are used to take pictures with cameras which help the farmers to examine their crops and identify the infections and it is also used for herbicide or pesticide sprays.
  • Organic Farming – The demand, supply and sustainable agriculture has created the Organic farming Organic farming can reduce the soil degradation and environmental hazards that are very common in other ways of farming. Also, there is a high demand of bioenergy, high value food and cash crops and organised food retailing so this can create a favourable business environment for the farmers and they also go through different lab testing of the soil so that they can grow what they need to grow and make their soil more fertile and maximize their profits.

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  • Vertical Farming – It is a very common way of farming where the crops are grown on vertical stacked structures. We know that the population is continuously rising and we don’t have enough space for farming so vertical farming has the ability of farming in a less room as compared to a traditional farm and is also becoming very popular and another important factor about this type of farming is that it uses a very little amount of water as compared to the outdoor farms.
  • Regenerative Agriculture – Here the farmers practice such type of farming that will increase soil carbon sequestration like reduced tillage and using cover crops. According to some professionals, it will also be a solution for climate change mitigation and it will improve the soil health and its fertility.
  • Accurate Yield Predictions – The farmers can quickly predict the yield before the crops are harvested by the help of some agricultural system. So they will be able to find the buyers for all of their harvest, which will eliminate the food wastage and will also increase the profits. This monitoring method can also help them with the variety selection and the yield.
  • Modern Greenhouses – We have seen that many small scale industries have been changed to large scale industries with tremendous developments in technology and modern greenhouse systems are essential as they are emerging at an increasing rate.
  • Diversification of Agriculture – We know that agriculture not only meets with the food grains demand but is also diversified to produce some other commercial crops,  horticulture crops or floriculture products like Flowers, Dairy products and the animal husbandry products. The demand for these products are increasing and it will also create ample scope for agricultural sector growth in terms of increased production and trade.

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  • Data Integration – The data management software can allow the growers to monitor the data and will help in decision making and it will also help them to make adjustments in real-time like altering the planting depth based on the available moisture.
  • Horticulture Output – The climatic conditions and soil characteristics helps Horticulture crops like fruits, vegetables, spices, cashew nuts, Tuber crops, medicinal and aromatic plants etc. to grow and with the increase in the production of these crops the value of export is also rising.
  • Livestock Farming Technology – This involves business of Poultry farms, Dairy Farms, Cattles and livestock related agribusiness. Some sensors and data Technologies can track the current livestock industry and it can also improve the product liability by carefully detecting the sick animals and recognising the room for improvement and the computer vision allows all types of unbiased data to get converted to meaningful and actionable insights.
  • Indoor Farming – Indoor farming can help the agricultural industry to cope up with the diminishing resources and increasing unstable climate. It will help the farmers to grow certain crops in three dimensions as in vertical farming and controlling the indoor environment could also ensure climate protection with year round crop cycles and there will be less threat of pests.
  • Genome Editing – Genetically Modified Crops have gone down and many consumers are complaining about this unorthodox approach to produce crops and many governments has also banned GM foods, but some farmers have introduced a technique known as ‘Genome Editing’ which changes a crop or animal’s genome down to just a single genetic letter rather than shifting the entire genes. It imitates the natural process of mutation. In simpler words, we can say that genome editing is a natural process in a more controlled manner and has the capability to change the future of agriculture.

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  • Artificial Intelligence (AI) – Artificial Intelligence is already transforming Industries across the world but it has a long way to go and it has the ability to produce ideal conditions for the plants to grow in, by controlling the temperature and carbon dioxide levels and it helps the plants to get exactly what they need for their growth. It can play a more significant role in the future to meet ambitious crop yields while maintaining a high level of quality of the crops.

Importance of Technologies in Agriculture

Technologies in the agriculture sector has many serious positive effects in Fertilisers, Pesticides, Seed technology, Genetic engineering, Biotechnology etc and the main focus of these technologies are Robotics, Precision agriculture, Artificial Intelligence, IoT and it follows various types of farming techniques like Indoor farming, Vertical farming, Smart farming and the Genetic engineering techniques and Biotechnology have resulted in pest resistance and has effectively increased the crop yields and also the quality of the crops and this technological advancement has innovated the agricultural sector and has also improved the productivity from the mechanization of agriculture.

  • Climate and weather prediction has become easy through Artificial Intelligence.
  • Biotechnology has helped in growing resilient crops and it has also included traditional breeding methods, genetic engineering and development of microorganisms.
  • IoT also helped in improving the farm yields and supply chain management by monitoring the data. They collect data which is monitored and managed and help the agriculture sector to run very smoothly.

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Agriculture is highly dependent on Nature but Climatic changes and Global warming can always make an unpredictable effect on the farming industry and it also affects the quality and yield of the crops, but the various modern methods and innovative approaches have increased productivity and have also maximized the profits.

They not only provide significant food grain production but they have also increased agricultural production as a share of GDP. We can say that Technology has a main role in Agricultural practices because it has helped in reducing the losses and increasing the efficiency of the farm and has positively impacted the farmers by using the digital tools which has  resulted in improving the agricultural sector and their income as well.


The needs and demands of the world are regularly changing and therefore Agriculture also needs to be changed and the future of farming is nothing as it is today.

From Genome Editing to more Indoor farming, the Agriculture industry has become very exciting which will show tremendous growth in the future. We can expect a lot more changes in the existing techniques and technologies and even some purely new technologies as well.

The future lies in utilising the existing farming equipments and existing resources in a more effective and productive way, because in the future we are going to have less land, less water so it is important to have certain techniques and technologies that will utilise less land, less water, and that will help in maintaining the fertility of soil, and maintaining the ecological balance, which will help in reducing the food wastages. The increase in population has also increased the food demands, so we need more food rather than food wastage.

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Vertical farming and Smart farming or Digitisation techniques can be helpful in the future because Digital agriculture can promote efficient and effective use of the available resources and it also ensures worker safety, reducing the environmental impacts by increasing agricultural production and reducing the production costs.


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