The post-Covid global agriculture industry is facing significant challenges such as labor shortage, high labor costs, and many others. These challenges are threatening farmers' margins and making their businesses unsustainable. Whilst farmers are struggling with their business, due to the increasing global population, the demand for global food production is becoming bigger and bigger, which requires higher productivity and yield. Robotics and automation are considered promising approaches to increase efficiency/productivity, reduce costs and resolve these issues.
Although there is an imminent need to automate the agriculture industry, the adoption rate of agricultural automation/robotics has been quite low in comparison with other industries such as mining and manufacturing. One of the reasons is that agricultural robots are typically expensive and need significant upfront investments, thereby leading to a very long payback time, which is particularly unideal for such a low-margin industry.
Nevertheless, this situation is beginning to change these days. The recent development of robotics technologies (e.g., navigation systems, cameras, end-effectors, etc.) lead to cost reductions, enabling them to become commercially viable options for farmers. There have been hundreds of agricultural robotics companies worldwide specializing in a variety of agriculture applications including weeding, milking, harvesting, and many others. Whilst all the applications have lots of potential, due to different technology readiness levels and application values, they have various adoption rates and timelines for commercialization.
In this webinar, IDTechEx Technology Analyst Yulin Wang will talk through the key enabling technologies used in agricultural robotics, explain why different applications have different levels of development, and analyze how this trend will change and evolve in the upcoming decade.
The webinar will include:
- A summary of key challenges faced by the agriculture industry.
- The typical agricultural robotics applications, their level of development, and how IDTechEx categorizes them into three different themes.
- An overview of how technical difficulty and application value will affect commercialization and adoption.
- A discussion of key enabling technologies and components.
- An evaluation of the barriers in the agricultural robotics industry.
- An explanation of the technical forecasting chart of how IDTechEx sees the industry going in 10 years.