14 Dec

Research and Development Boost for Agriculture

In modern history, the trends within agriculture research and development (AgR&D) are changing. For over fifty years, the patterns of R&D have been followed and noted across the world so that trends can be spotted and future predictions can be made. Therefore, we can now say with certainty that middle-income nations are investing more money than high-income nations; this is the first time that this has happened in what we can call ‘modern history’.

Along with this huge piece of news, the figures also show that spending within the private sector is very quickly catching up to that of the public sector. Sadly, low-income countries are seeing the gap widen as they have done for so many years. When it comes to R&D in agriculture, it takes a lot longer to take effect than it does in any other industry so this positive news comes as a result of R&D that took place many years ago. According to some experts, the R&D that we see now will have an impact for those in 2050 and beyond.

In years gone by, much of the research for food and agriculture would come from government agencies and universities but this is also changing and is now being spent on fertilisers, informatics, crop breeding, pesticides, as well as food technologies. Over the past few years, AgR&D is dramatically changing and it will be interesting to see just where the industry can go.

Student Research and Development Cooperation

Within these R&D changes, we have recently seen a brand new project which will involve the cooperation between high school students and the Department of Agriculture and Food of Western Australia (DAFWA). Currently, there is a problem with snails in broadacre crops and these high school students have been tasked with finding a solution.

As members of a coding club, the students will now be focusing on removing weeds and snails through advanced technology rather than video games. In modern day agriculture, one DAFWA officer has said that tech-programming is vital and this project is just the first step of this. With programming, the future could hold programmes, apps, and mobile phone gadgets that help with many factors within the agriculture industry.

Immediately, concerns were raised as to their experience in agriculture but these were soon removed. Recently, some experts have praised the move as DAFWA has spotted a problem and found a unique way to deal with it. In fact, it could even be a benefit that they have no experience because they will look at the problem with a unique perspective.

Source: ABC & Comment