Feasibility and Evaluation of Precision Farming
Precision farming is characterized by a number of sophisticated tools that assist in monitoring variation and managing inputs. Majority of farms in India are rain-fed, and with the change of weather patterns, availability of rainwater is very unpredictable. Hence the nonavailability of inputs and labor on time is the biggest stumbling block to increase productivity of farms and remuneration. PA can help in this matter. In India precision farming is still at a very nascent stage although it is very much in practice in developed countries. In India more than 57.8% of operational holdings have size less than 1 ha. However, in the major agricultural states of Punjab, Rajasthan, Haryana, and Gujarat, more than 20% of agricultural lands have operational holding size of more than 4 ha. But there are many constraints that are limiting adoption of site-specific crop management in Indian states like culture and perception of users, land fragmentation and small farm size, high initial costs, knowledge and technical gaps, lack of success stories, climatic aberrations, poor connectivity in rural areas, high energy demands, lack of local technical expertise, etc. This chapter focuses on feasibility of precision farming, the problems faced during adoption of precision farming techniques, and the potential in India. A section on feasibility in Jammu and Kashmir state has also been included.
In this chapter the economics and profitability of precision farming technologies are also analyzed. Rapid socioeconomic changes in some developing countries, including India, are creating new scopes for application of precision agriculture (PA).
KeywordsCapital expenditures Economics Feasibility Constraints Profitability Environmental benefits
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