In the U.S., less than half of farmers surveyed by consulting firm McKinsey are using farm management software, and 25% are using remote-sensing and precision agriculture hardware.
That software is a foundational technology in enabling the autonomous machinery and AI-enabled equipment of the future, analysts say, and unless farmers start using it, some will be left behind in the next decade of farm innovation. At the moment, 3% of American farmers said they plan to adopt software or precision agriculture hardware over the next two years, according to McKinsey.
At the same time, venture capital funding for farm management software, sensing and Internet-of-Things devices increased by 35% last year to $1.7 billion globally—the largest increase of any agriculture tech category, according to investment firm AgFunder.
The next big wave in farm innovation, largely known as “precision agriculture,” uses technologies like data analytics, AI, GPS and sensors to help farmers make data-informed decisions that could boost their yields with fewer resources.