Experts link high yield, low cost with precision agriculture practices
Precision agriculture practices using high-tech equipment can have positive impact on farm productivity and economics as they provide higher or equal yields with lower production cost than conventional practices. Chemicals are used only where and when they are necessary.
This consensus was developed among the agricultural experts in research, academia and fields during the one day seminar titled 'Precision Agriculture and Climate Change' held at the College of Agriculture, Sargodha University on November 28, 2018.
The seminar was organized by the Department of Agronomy to impart knowledge about the precision farming and the ability to reduce agricultural inputs to spatial and temporal needs of the fields, which can result in lower greenhouse gas emissions.
Dr Tasawar Abbas, Instructor the Department of Agronomy, In-service Agricultural Training Institute delivered a lecture on 'Precision Agriculture to Reduce the Risks of Herbicide Resistance.' He highlighted the increasing urgent problem of herbicide resistance and gave recommendations to reduce the risks of herbicide resistance including reducing the weed seed-bank through diversified programs that minimize weed seed production and demonstrating the benefits and costs of proactive, diversified weed management systems for the mitigation of herbicide-resistant weeds.
He said that the occurrence of weeds in agricultural fields of grain and fiber production has caused losses to farmers for a long time but with the help of resistance genes in cultivated species this problem would be solved.
Shoaib Anwar, Research Assistant of Fodder Research Institute, talked about 'Climate Change and Agricultural Strategies to Minimize its Effects'. He called for promotion of environment-friendly agricultural practices like precision cultivation to increase productivity and to reduce the input cost.
Muhammad Shahzad, Instructor, the Department of Entomology, In-service Agricultural Training Institute briefed the seminar about 'Use of Drone Technology in Pesticide Application: A Step towards Safe Agriculture'. He said that drone technology will give the agriculture industry a high-technology makeover, with planning and strategy based on real-time data gathering and processing.
Six ways aerial and ground-based drones will be used throughout the crop cycle for Soil and field analysis, planting, crop spraying, crop monitoring, irrigation and health assessment of the crops as well, he informed.
Dr Ijaz Rasool, Principal College of Agriculture and Dr Ehsan Safdar, In-charge Department of Agronomy said that we are wasting our resources in agriculture because of our reluctance to switch from traditional methods.
They also talked about using environment-friendly practices at par with modern trends.
At the end, Dr Ijaz Rasool and Dr Ehsan Safdar distributed the participatory certificates among the guest speakers and the students.