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Intelligent technology transforming agriculture

JOHANNESBURG – THE Internet of Things (IoT) is significantly improving operations and agriculture environments.

However, there are still some obstacles that the sector has to overcome to fully realise the potential of IoT in the long and short term.

This is according to the IoT Industry Council of South Africa (IOTIC).

“COVID-19 was, of course, a major spanner in the works for a few years, but the trend towards IoT-driven solutions in agriculture is re-establishing itself,” said Roger Hislop, Exco member of the IOTIC.

He said massive-scale agri-operations with incredible economies of scale, both in production and export markets, was driving this trend by its urgent need to increase production efficiencies and improve planning to stay up with the intense competition for resources and market share.

“Many of the larger agricultural enterprises have already invested in IoT solutions and adoption is accelerating quickly,” Hislop said.

“Most farm operations teams don’t talk about IoT, they talk about operational technology – but at its heart, it’s the IoT capability that drives the value,” Hislop said.

The expert believes IoT epitomises the transformation and optimisation of operational technology and can become a tool with which agricultural organisations reduce risk, manage resources and gather the data that will have a transformative impact on their business.

He forecast that over the next year, IoT would remain a solid climber in the agri market as solutions provide farmers with improved tools to remain competitive and agile in tight market conditions.

Hislop concluded this is the era of decision-ready insights that could be used in real-time to assess crops and livestock and create modelling scenarios that predict outcomes and optimise systems.

“The use of IoT in agri is set to make sustainable changes in the industry by providing farmers with exactly what information and automation they need to transform productivity and growth,” Hislop said.

According to Hislop, IoT remains a leading digital trend thanks to its intelligent ability to converge both the digital and physical worlds to create smart solutions.

– CAJ News

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