This blog, posted by Scott Elliott, National Institute of Food and Agriculture, appears on USDA.gov.
The world will have many more mouths to feed in the next few decades – projected to be more than 9 billion by 2050 – but the amount of arable land is not getting any larger, droughts are taking their toll on fresh water, and there are fewer experienced farmers to do the work. How will food get on the table?
By globalizing precision agriculture education – the art of gathering and using data to make sound, timely decisions for agricultural production, such as when and how much fertilizer, water, or other resource to add.
Precision agriculture allows growers to maximize yield while minimizing waste.
The result is more food to feed the hungry, a reduced environmental footprint, and greater profits for producers.
The University of Georgia (UGA) and Italy’s Università degli Studi di Padova (UNIPD) will soon sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to offer a dual graduate degree program in sustainable agriculture. The two universities have cooperated in recent years to enhance each other’s precision agriculture programs and students learn how to function in the globalizing agricultural economy.
Precision ag is important because it allows us to use information to make management decisions that improve our efficiency, notes Dr. George Vellidis, professor in UGA’s Crop and Soil Sciences Department. Read more at USDA.gov.