The cloud-based ag data train is about to leave the station – are you on it?
In order to meet the ever-increasing consumption needs of the global population, agriculture businesses are modernizing through smart agriculture based on cloud computing and IoT technologies. These technologies create solutions for the effective usage of finite resources like arable land and water.
These technologies can be used to remotely monitor soil moisture and crop growth and to take preventive actions to identify crop damages and dangers. This makes it possible for farmers to engage in “Smart Agriculture,” which involves using new technologies based on cloud computing and IoT to remotely manage and automate agricultural tasks.
Smart agriculture creates a vast amount of data on the farm, every day. The average estimated number of data points generated on the farm has over doubled between 2012 and 2022. By 2034, an estimated 4 million data points will be generated on the average farm, every single day. That vast amount of data requires top-notch data tools to manage and unlock its full potential. Without proper data support, all of those valuable data points generated on the farm will never contribute to agriculture in the meaningful way they need to.
Today, data is used for some applications on the farm. According to a Purdue University survey, 93% of farmers are using data to support fertilization decisions, with 71% specifically using variable rate technology for fertilizer application. Only 7% of farmers surveyed reported that they do not collect any farm data.
Of those who do collect data, 58% are sharing it with an agronomist to support decision-making. This means that farm data accuracy with cloud-based software in agriculture is imperative to success.
The role of cloud computing technology in agriculture fields and the use of big data analysis can lead to increased innovation, improved business resilience, and greater profits. According to a report by the Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG), businesses that effectively harness and leverage data are more resilient and profitable than those that don’t. Data leaders are more likely to identify and remediate security incidents quickly, making better cloud-based farming decisions, and deriving more revenue from data monetization.
Agriculture’s Need for Cloud-Based Technology
Applications of Agricultural Data
Agricultural data has a wide range of applications that can transform farming practices and contribute to enhancing food security. The use of advanced technologies in agriculture generates a large amount of data, known as big data, which can be analyzed to make better farm-level decisions.
Sensors, software-based decision support systems, and digital communication tools are identified as critical technologies for data-driven agriculture. Additionally, artificial intelligence complements big data by enabling data mining and extracting meaningful value from raw data.
Yield prediction algorithms, image recognition algorithms for pest and disease detection, and robotics for crop harvesting are among the AI applications being developed in agriculture. The deployment of digital decision-support tools, big data analytics, and artificial intelligence has the potential to improve agricultural productivity and contribute positively to agricultural machinery and logistics, market information, plant breeding, risk management, and sustainability.
The agriculture industry is facing increasing demand and various disruptive forces, including constraints in land and farming inputs, rising costs of inputs, and the need to improve sustainability and resilience. Connectivity and advanced digital tools are needed to address these challenges and enable the next productivity leap. If implemented successfully in agriculture, connectivity could add $500 billion in additional value to the global gross domestic product by 2030.
Cloud Computing Applications Win in Agriculture
Cloud computing applications in agriculture have revolutionized the field in recent years. Across the industry, cloud-based technologies give companies the opportunity to improve their operations to gain a competitive edge. Taking that first step away from on-prem and towards cloud computing is a critical juncture for companies that are looking to grow in capability, innovation, and scale.
- Reduces initial costs for agribusinesses. Instead of purchasing expensive software and hardware, the necessary space to store them, and hiring the staff to support them, companies can simply subscribe to cloud-based solutions. This gives them the flexibility to manage their business and enables them to only pay for what they need. Companies can reduce their overall capital expenses.
- Offers limitless scale and resource allocation as needed. Agribusinesses can easily increase or decrease their computing resources to meet their changing needs. This scalability is particularly useful during peak periods such as planting or harvest seasons. It also allows companies to grow and innovate faster, without computing infrastructure holding them back.
- Takes care of back-end maintenance and upgrades, eliminating the need for hands-on, resource-intensive maintenance. Companies can focus on their core competencies and leave the IT management to the cloud service provider. This also improves data security.
- Enables easy and rapid development. Research and development teams can quickly test and deploy new applications, allowing them to respond quickly to changing market conditions.
- Team collaboration is made easy with cloud computing. Team members can collaborate on the same data and system in the cloud, regardless of their physical location. This improves communication and allows for better cloud-based farming decision-making. And because cloud computing allows data to be viewed and analyzed in real time, teams can make in-season and time-sensitive decisions with ease.
- Finally, cloud computing enables global development. Companies can leverage cloud-based solutions to expand their operations across the globe. This is particularly useful for small-scale or start-up organizations that may not have the resources to expand their operations on their own. Cloud computing provides access at any scale.
Altogether, these six factors influenced by cloud computing support accelerated innovation in agriculture at a critical time when new approaches are needed to adapt to net zero goals and growing populations.
Cloud computing has many applications in agriculture and offers a wide range of benefits to companies in the agriculture industry. By leveraging cloud-based agricultural technologies, companies can reduce costs, increase efficiency, and gain a competitive edge in the market.
In agriculture specifically, there’s an urgent need to adopt cloud-based farming decision technologies because agricultural data is expected to be stored for 10-30 years – eventually exceeding 100 petabytes. Using cloud computing applications in agriculture to increase access to this vast dataset will increase collaboration between experts to unlock the true value of the data.
Are You On the Cloud-Based Data Train?
Cloud computing technology’s role in agriculture fields offers numerous benefits to various players in the industry. Without adopting cloud computing and IoT to support smart agriculture, companies will be making decisions and operating based on outdated on-prem systems that will hold them back from their true potential.
For agronomists, cloud-based technology can help optimize crop yields and reduce waste by providing real-time data on soil health, weather patterns, and other critical factors that impact plant growth. This provides a competitive edge to build their relationships with growers and their customers.
Agriculture input companies can leverage cloud-based platforms to streamline their operations, track inventory, and better manage their supply chains. Through cloud-based data and IoT, input companies can support farmers in smart agriculture and making product-related decisions based on data and models. By finding the best fit for the farmer, the farm, and the environment, input companies will win with cloud-based farming decision-making.
Researchers and scientists can use cloud-based platforms to access and share data from various sources, collaborate with colleagues, and accelerate the pace of scientific discovery. Researchers can work in tandem on a live dataset, increasing the speed at which they arrive at the answers.
Finally, food and beverage companies can leverage cloud-based platforms to track data from raw food materials, improve supply chain transparency, and promote sustainability. Cloud computing allows companies to track data across continents and companies as raw food materials are grown, harvested, and then transitioned down the supply chain until they are manufactured into food goods.
Agmatix Is On Board for Smart Agriculture
Agmatix is a next-generation company. We offer smart agriculture solutions based on cloud computing and IoT that support agriculture professionals in achieving goals related to their businesses and sustainability.
Agmatix leads the industry with Data-driven ag solutions that provide access to new data. Through open-source databases such as the Global Crop Nutrient Database, Agmatix supports access to open-source data that can be used with cloud computing to develop new innovations.
Agmatix knows the value of collaboration in developing new innovations and solving big challenges. That’s why the backbone of our work is Axiom technology, which breaks down data silos and standardizes data to be used together – regardless of source. Axiom is the backbone of Agmatix technologies that unlock the true potential of data.
One of those technologies is the Agronomic Field Trial platform. It’s an end-to-end solution for agronomic field trial management, supporting front-end planning, execution, and analysis. It provides both modern reporting and mobile data collection opportunities that meet the needs of those working in today’s data-driven agriculture industry. These features are only possible because of cloud computing.
Digital Crop Advisor is a decision support system that builds custom, site-specific crop nutrition recommendations. It uses AI recommendations driven by cloud-based technology to support agronomists in providing recommendations to customers that optimize crop yield while minimizing the impact on the environment. Digital Crop Advisor’s unique approach even provides insights into sustainability KPIs – all through cloud computing.
Agmatix is poised to revolutionize the agriculture industry using cutting-edge cloud-based farming decision-making technology to optimize crop production and drive sustainable growth. Agmatix will keep innovating, but the cloud-based data train is about to leave the station. Companies making the jump from the on-prem platform will reap the benefits of increased innovation and speed to market.