The shrinking cultivable land in India, attributed to urbanization and desertification causing an annual loss of 30,000 hectares, underscores the imperative of technological integration for ensuring future agricultural sustainability.

Challenges of Small Landholdings:

  • Average farmer landholdings have diminished from 1.2 ha to 1.08 ha, posing a challenge to incorporate new technologies and connect them with modern input and output markets.
  • Enhancing agriculture efficiency is pivotal to bolster growth and productivity, as demonstrated by the green revolution’s success in achieving food self-sufficiency.

Role of Technology in Agrarian Changes:
Seed Quality Enhancement: Biotechnology

  • High-yielding genetically engineered seeds like BT Cotton optimize pesticide and water use, elevating yields.
  • Biofortification enhances nutritional content and shelf life, addressing malnutrition issues.
  • Example: BT Cotton has significantly improved cotton yield, benefiting Indian farmers.

Efficiency in Farm Inputs:

  • Water Management: Adoption of drip irrigation, moisture sensors, and sprinklers conserves water resources.
  • Soil Health: Soil testing technologies aid precise fertilization, minimizing wastage and environmental impact.
  • Fertilizers and Pesticides: Sensor-based application and drone-assisted spraying reduce input wastage.
  • Information Dissemination: Platforms like Kisan Suvidha and M-Kisan provide weather and farming insights.
  • Renewable Energy: Solar-powered pumps alleviate electricity dependency.
  • Mechanization: Harvest mechanization enhances labor productivity.
  • Example: Drip irrigation systems have improved water efficiency in states like Maharashtra.

Higher Crop Productivity:

  • Technology-driven practices lead to increased yields, improving overall agricultural output.
  • Example: Adoption of hybrid rice varieties has substantially increased rice production.

Reduced Impact on Natural Ecosystems:

  • Minimal chemical runoff into water bodies due to judicious technology-driven input usage.
  • Example: Sustainable agriculture practices are safeguarding India’s fragile ecosystems.

Efficient Produce & Waste Management:

  • Cold storage chains minimize post-harvest losses, benefitting both farmers and consumers.
  • Innovations like PUSA Biodecomposer address crop residue concerns.
  • Agricultural waste recycling contributes to bioenergy production.
  • Example: The cold storage network has reduced spoilage, ensuring food security.

Benefits for All:

  • Farmers:
    • e-NAM trading portal empowers farmers with better access to markets and prices.
    • Remote sensing and GIS aid informed decision-making.
  • Consumers:
    • Food processing and value addition enhance food safety.
    •  Direct farm-to-consumer e-commerce models lower costs.
    • Example: Platforms like Ninjakart have revolutionized farm-to-door connectivity.

The realm of technology encompasses far more than mechanization; it holds the potential to propel agricultural products onto the global stage. Integrating technology not only addresses current challenges but also paves the way for a more sustainable and prosperous agricultural future for India

Legacy Editor Changed status to publish May 6, 2024