When one speaks of digitalisation, one's mind turns directly to large companies that have decided to master new technologies and to innovate to become more performing. However, it's very much obvious that in this day and age the digital transformation touches all sectors and this is especially the case for agriculture! In fact, French farmers, as well as others from across the globe, are opting for new technologies to make their activity more dynamic, to become more efficient and to reduce the arduousness of their work.
Development of new tools
One couldn’t begin to count the new tools that are adding to "Agriculture 2.0". One example is Ekylibre, a software that aids with the management of farmland. But this movement is broad-based which shows a truly digital transformation of agriculture. At the last Salon de l'Agriculture (a large meeting of farmers from all around France to present their methods and exchange ideas on agriculture), digitalisation was the guest of honour. A special place was designated for La ferme digital (The Digital Farm), an assembly of start-ups that searches for the "farm of tomorrow".
This innovation lets these "digital fields" find their way by assisting farmers in their daily tasks, but also by allowing a fluidity of exchanges between different actors in the agricultural sector. Therefore, this digital transformation allows for larger transparency, especially in quality and the ability to track products. It's therefore the consumer who'll win.
A global transformation?
However, if European or more generally Western farmers do, in fact, have access to these innovative resources (if network connection permits it), does this also apply to farmers in developing countries? One can assume that if the main questions being asked in India are about the development of a more durable farming process and higher levels of food independence, that the digital transformation will definitely play a role in accomplishing these goals. This is evident in the apparition of a new phenomenon: the rise of the smartphone and connectedness.
In fact, in 2017, it's estimated that the number of phones circulating in the world will grow to more than 1.5 billion devices. In developing countries, but also in Africa, the smartphone has made its mark as becoming the number one numeric support. But the advantages smartphones offer come from its ability to create whatever the users want. In the near future, numerous applications should pop up and contribute to the "doping of African agriculture". This includes helping future yields but to also by making farming greener. Digitalisation is on the verge of shifting the sector and helping populations with their fear of malnutrition. All we have to do is help it find its foothold.
Here at Solylend, we believe that digitalisation is a possible solution to help the most fragile of populations but also to help turn the tides globally towards positive change. This is how we'll contribute to a better world: by Working Together.