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Will small-holder agriculture leapfrog ahead with access to precision agriculture technology?

By: Shaun Haney

May 8, 2017

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I often think that when we discuss precision agriculture we tend to naturally focus on large broadacre-style farming across the U.S. Midwest corn belt, Ontario, and the western Canadian prairies. We don’t seem to talk about how precision agriculture technology could create a difference in small-holder agriculture.

Clearly, auto-steer is not something you must have when you are farming an acre but there are still applications for precision in this setting. Many people focus on seed technology, but what about the opportunity to access information to make better decisions? When you are farming one acre to feed yourself and your small village, every inch of production counts.

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Last week, Rob Saik had the chance to present at a conference hosted by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Bill Gates himself was in attendance and was looking for ways to improve farming practices and production for small landholders. I asked Rob about how precision agriculture creates competitiveness for small holder agriculture, and increases production through the use of knowledge and information sharing.