Technology Eases Farming ‘Drudgery’ and Risk as Climate Threats Grow

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

By Laurie Goering

In India, farmers growing crops for seed company Mahyco get a text message after they deliver their harvest, noting its weight and how much was usable – followed quickly by another text saying their money is in the bank.

That reliable flow of cash through their accounts means when a farmer goes to ask for credit, the bank is much more likely to give them a loan, said Usha Barwale Zehr, director and chief technology officer for the Maharashtra-based seed firm.

As climate change makes farming far tougher and more young people reject it as a career, technological innovations to make the work more secure and appealing can help, agricultural specialists told the Skoll World Forum on Social Entrepreneurship in Oxford this week.

Giving small-scale farmers access to the right-sized farm machinery, for instance, can help reduce backbreaking labour and keep more people on the land, Zehr said.

Photo courtesy of pixelfusion3d.

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation (link opens in a new window)

Agriculture, Environment, Technology
agtech, climate change, smallholder farmers