A recent survey farmers are among the most connected people. By their profession and the machines that surround them they are accustomed to technology and especially new technologies.
The objects connected for farmers
The Internet and connected objects allow farmers to get a bunch of useful information for their work. The weather, for example, including the Pleinchamp application to stay informed about what is happening in agriculture.
This is not the only useful application for a connected farmer. Some use ATLAND who is a specialist in management of cereal farms but also from livestock. It offers field management, herds or economic performance. There are also applications to recognize the plants and especially weeds that may endanger crops.
At the level of connected objects there for everyone. First of all the connected watches and speakers for smartphones can be pleasant in life on the farm. A farmer’s hands are often taken or dirty, and answer the phone is not really practical, whereas with these systems it is possible for example to take the call without touching your smartphone.
New products coming to market, the company wants Biopic implant chips in cattle. This system aims to better manage the herd but especially to act quickly in case of problems. It also helps to increase productivity and to consider the well-being of animals by analyzing molecules in the blood as glucose or temperature. This would also limit the veterinary products for livestock.
The world of connected also introduced connected glasses, but also robots drones to agriculture.
The Institute of Husbandry devotes much of his time to precision farming. To learn more, Clément Allain expertise, precision livestock expert, was helpful.
To start, he gave us a definition of precision farming: “This is a set of technologies that includes sensors for measuring the biological, animal husbandry and behavioral parameters on animals. These are all of the information processing systems that will store and process the data from the sensors and send the form information to the breeder.”
It is possible to detect mastitis in dairy cows or temperature increases. The farmer can also know the activity of his cows for one day and the amount of milk they supply to each milking without forgetting the amount of food absorbed.
There are automated weighing systems using RFID loops and devices to detect calving. Other devices previously intended only to dairy cows also make their appearances in other farm animals.
New technologies allow farmers to save time and productivity with tools that improve monitoring of their animals.
Robots manage the herd
Productivity and saved time are two major factors that encourage farmers to connect more. Rather normal when we know that farmers are working 7/7 and 24h/24 and they rely on the productivity of the farm for a living.
Some have decided to robotise exploitation. This allows them to increase productivity, have more free time and well-being of animals is total. Connected to a central computer, different robots can be installed on a farm. These robots usually operate Bluetooth and also take good care of feeding cattle with fresh hay but also to make deals at any time of day.
For milking the robot is able to determine which cow must be milked with a necklace of recognition. It automatically connects to the cows and do not have to disconnect the four teats simultaneously as can still be seen on some farms. It therefore detects what breasts that are to be milked and which have more milk.
The farmer only needs to program the amount of food to distribute and hours. Everything can be monitored by the central computer which checks drafts but also the production of milk.
With this system, farmers have more time for their families because they no longer work every day at all hours. It is often said that the robots take the place of humans in the labor market but in this case it is rather valuable assistants in an environment where the work is present every minute.
Drones for agriculture
There are different drones for agriculture, some allow to analyze the land while others watch over the flocks.
We interviewed Rodolph Vogt Director of M-CADOR specializing in UAVs. The company provides comprehensive services to farmers through the harvest of different data from UAVs.
The M-CADOR products are intended for precision agriculture “Our multi-UAV technology bricks, man-machine interface, algorithms, cloud and sensors allow us to develop a wide variety of solutions and data acquisition operations “said Rodolph Vogt.
We asked the experts drones if they were created to watch over the land or rather on livestock, “The farmer can use the tool as well drone for applications relating to crops or livestock. Nevertheless, affecting livestock remains experimental, while land monitoring to optimize the use of inputs is more widespread. ”
The company was also able to tell us about the applications and the use of drones by farmers: “More and more farmers are using drones to get advice for nitrogen fertilization. Other applications such as counting or detecting plant weed and disease are also possible. ”
We also wanted to know the positives and negatives to the use of drones in the agricultural environment. The company says that there are only positives: “The optimization of resources by advocating inputs, increasing profitability by detecting problems at an early stage and the time saved through monitoring his field from his computer are positives for the farmer. Drones also enable a reduction of the ecological footprint by limiting the use of phytosanitary products. ”
As usual we wanted to know if the connected devices, drones in this case, are reliable. Rodolph Vogt answers: “Some of these devices are experimental phase and therefore still have to prove themselves. But some applications are known for their utilities and are already used on several continents. ”
Finally the price issue is critical because it must to equip the necessary budget. “A drone, purchase, for agriculture, can cost between 28,000 and 50,000 euros, which is an important investment for the farmer. Therefore, we develop a competitive product to overcome the financial barriers that still limit the adoption of the drone in all farms. ”
Connected objects but also robots and drones are well represented in the meadow! If many farmers have not yet embarked on the adventure, others did not hesitate for long! The gain in time and productivity are two major motivations connected farmers.