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Smart Farming Revolutionises Agriculture in Indonesia

Image credits: brin.go.id
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The current climate change significantly impacts various sectors, including agriculture in Indonesia. Therefore, it is crucial for researchers and academics to actively contribute to finding solutions to these issues. One of the consequences of global climate change is the potential reduction in productivity, agricultural production, and the quality of agricultural products. Additionally, climate change can diminish the efficiency and effectiveness of distributing agricultural products.

Smart farming can improve resource utilisation efficiency, such as water and fertilisers. Harnessing sensor technology and real-time monitoring can minimise waste, reduce production costs, and contribute to sustainable agriculture.

Dwinita Wikan Utami, Head of the Horticulture and Plantation Research Centre at BRIN, highlighted one of the significant potentials of Smart Farming, which is resource efficiency through real-time monitoring, especially by employing sensors.

Joko Pitono, a Researcher at the BRIN Centre, explained that Smart Farming is a concept that utilises digital technology and information to enhance efficiency, productivity, and sustainability in crop and livestock production. He emphasised the need for Smart Farming applications due to several challenges in Indonesian agriculture. These challenges include a decreasing rural workforce due to migration to urban areas, food security issues, increased biotic/abiotic stress due to climate change, and converting agricultural land for non-agricultural purposes.

The design of Smart Farming applications is a complex task that requires collaboration across diverse fields of expertise, including electronics, photonics, physiological agronomy, pest and disease knowledge, agroclimatology, soil science, and mechatronics.

It is essential to remember that IoT-based Smart Farming relies on a robust cloud server infrastructure, supporting crucial functions such as monitoring essential parameters, big data analysis, management and control, and actuator activation. Smart Farming applications encompass various aspects, including the management of crop production inputs like irrigation, nutrient applications, land preparation, pest control, lighting regulation, microclimate control, harvest management, and product evacuation.

Furthermore, Joko shared information about ongoing research in his team related to Smart Farming applications. They are developing a smart hydroponic and smart fertigation system, flexible sunlight transmitters, and controlled microclimate chambers to produce genuine shallot seeds.

One of the significant challenges in Smart Farming development is finding solutions to real agricultural issues in the future. It includes developing technologies like a smart water generator for arid land, smart crop pollinators, smart crop lighting, and virtual screen protectors that can enhance productivity and sustainability in agriculture. With interdisciplinary like this, Smart Farming applications have the potential to bring significant innovation to the modern agricultural landscape.

The introduction of the Smart Farming policy requires a comprehensive regulatory framework to accommodate various aspects of transformation in agriculture. These regulations should encompass several critical aspects related to Smart Farming implementation.

Good regulations in implementing Smart Farming in the agricultural sector should reflect the interests of various stakeholders, from farmers to technology producers. It will ensure that the transition towards smart agriculture proceeds smoothly and significantly benefits agriculture and society.

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