Digital technologies are transforming all the sectors of the economy and the society in innumerable ways. Communications, banking, payments, travel, energy, healthcare, taxation, and governance have significantly benefited by deploying digital solutions. Agriculture and allied sectors call for the need of digital disruption in order to convert challenges of agriculture into opportunities.
Significance of Digital data in Agriculture
- To enable the farmer to realize higher income and better profitability through access to right information at the right time, and from innovative services.
- To enable better planning and execution of policies, programs, and schemes of the Central and State governments, and also of the private sector and Farmers Producer Organizations (FPOs).
- To enhance efficiencies in the usage of resources including land, water, seeds, fertilizers, pesticides, and farm mechanization by providing easier access to information.
- To build capacities across the gamut of digital agriculture and precision agriculture ¾ To give a fillip to R&D and Innovations in agriculture through access to high-quality data.
- To adopt the best principles of cooperative federalism while working with the states and union territories for the realization of the vision of IDEA.
- To formulate and leverage PPP frameworks for realizing the ‘power of the digital’ .
Steps needs to be taken
- While agreeing on the fact that a data revolution is inevitable in the agriculture sector, given its socio-political complexities, we cannot just count on technology fixes and agri-business investments for improving farmers’ livelihoods.
- Capacity Building of the Farmers: There need to be immense efforts to improve the capacities of the farmers in India – at least until the educated young farmers replace the existing under-educated small and medium farmers.
- Adopting Recommendations of World Bank Report: ‘The digital revolution—and the data it generates— are key to building an agriculture and food system that is efficient, environmentally sustainable, equitable, and able to link the world’s 570 million farms with 8 billion consumers’.
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