Hi-tech agriculture is freeing the farmer from his fields

From The Guardian:

Robots to pick, drones to survey crops and satellites to drive tractors – experts predict a fully automated farm in five years. But is this what farmers want?

The big, blue 18-tonne New Holland T8.435 tractor is not the heaviest or the tallest in the world but its £3,000 tyres and tank-style tracks stand two metres high, it bristles with antenna and at, about £250,000, it must be one of the most expensive.

For that, the farmer gets a monster machine that is revolutionising big farming, field by field. Its steering is assisted by satellite, it downloads data about crops and soil straight to agronomists and farm managers, works 24-7, can link with ground sensors and drones using infrared thermal cameras and tell to within a square metre the size of a field and where the most fertile or waterlogged places are.

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Source: John Vidal, “Hi-tech agriculture is freeing the farmer from his fields,” The Guardian (20 October 2015)

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