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Precision agriculture: The Pros and Cons

There are many benefits to precision farming but there are also a number of other issues which need considering before adopting the technology.

Advantages

  • GPS allows fields to be surveyed with ease.
  • Yield and soil characteristics can be mapped.
  • Non-uniform fields can be sub-divided into smaller plots according to their specific requirements.
  • Provides opportunities for better resource management and so could reduce wastage.
  • Minimises the risk to the environment particularly with respect to nitrate leaching and groundwater contamination via the optimsation of agrochemical products.

Disadvantages

Techniques are still under development and so it is important to take specialist advice before making expensive decisions.

  • Initial capital costs may be high and so it should be seen as a long-term investment.
  • It may take several years before you have sufficient data to fully implement the system.
  • Extremely demanding work particularly collecting and then analysing the data.

(Source – http://adlib.everysite.co.uk/adlib/defra/content.aspx?id=000IL3890W.16NTC0M9SDC2MO)

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