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Thailand’s AgTech Drive for Sustainable Farming

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Thailand is once again demonstrating its commitment to advancing its agricultural capabilities. The Minister of Digital Economy and Society’s support for farmers to embrace digital technology, particularly the utilisation of drones, reflects the nation’s serious dedication to accelerating and enhancing agricultural practices in Thailand.

Image credits: menpan.go.id

Mr Prasert Chandraruangthong, Minister of Digital Economy and Society, has conducted a field visit to witness the successful integration of drone technology in uplifting rural communities. The visit, conducted in collaboration with key figures such as Mr Phuchapong Nodthaisong, Secretary-General of the National Digital Economy and Society Committee, marks a pivotal stride in the expansion of the “1 Tambon 1 Digital” project, also known as the “Drone Jai Community.”

The delegation, including Mr Teerawut Thongphak, Deputy Secretary-General of the National Digital Economy and Society Committee, Mr Somkiat Siriwathanachoke, a specialist in policy management, and Mr Somboon Mekpaiboonwattana, a specialist in information and communication technology management from the National Digital Economy and Society Commission (NCDC), visited the Community Enterprise of the Comprehensive Farmers Group in Ban Dong Na Kham, Nong Nang Subdistrict, Tha Bo District, Nong Khai Province.

During the visit, the Minister and his team engaged in a comprehensive discussion with representatives of community enterprises. They delved into the outcomes of the digital technology and innovation project aimed at elevating the community’s overall well-being. The discussion included exploring challenges, obstacles, and recommendations from farmer groups. Additionally, the delegation had the opportunity to observe community products and witness firsthand the application of drones for smart agriculture.

The project, spearheaded by the Digital Economy Promotion Agency (DEPA), is designed to foster the development of a robust digital ecosystem. By leveraging drone technology for agriculture, the initiative aims to establish 16 service centres dedicated to maintaining, spraying, and distributing agricultural drones in the northeastern region. It forms part of a larger nationwide plan that envisions 50 such centres across the country, benefiting 160 communities in the northeastern region actively utilising drones for agricultural purposes.

Using drone technology in agriculture has proven transformative, offering efficient solutions to traditional farming challenges. Drones with advanced sensors and imaging capabilities provide farmers real-time data on crop health, pest infestations, and overall field conditions. This invaluable information enables farmers to make data-driven decisions, optimise resource allocation, and maximise yields.

During the visit, the delegation attended a lecture detailing the project’s outcomes and the practical applications of digital technology and innovation in agriculture. The engagement with community stakeholders facilitated a deeper understanding of the impact of such initiatives on the ground.

In alignment with the government’s commitment to digital transformation, the “1 Tambon 1 Digital” project exemplifies a strategic approach to empower rural communities. Further, through drone technology, Thailand can address the ongoing challenges of climate change while enhancing its agricultural sector’s efficiency, productivity, and resilience. In this context, food security becomes crucial and must be addressed quickly. By integrating drone technology into agriculture, the initiative not only enhances productivity but also opens new avenues for economic growth and sustainable development.

As the Minister of Digital Economy and Society navigates the frontiers of digital innovation in agriculture, the field visit serves as a testament to the government’s dedication to leveraging technology for the betterment of society. The project’s expansion is poised to create a ripple effect, inspiring similar initiatives and fostering a culture of innovation that transcends geographical boundaries.

The journey towards a more digitally inclusive and technologically advanced agricultural landscape is underway, and the “Drone Jai Community” project stands at the forefront of this technological revolution, paving the way for a sustainable and tech-driven future in agriculture. These activities aim to raise awareness and stimulate the application of drone technology for agriculture, including drone flying and maintenance competitions.

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