And just like that, another year (almost) in the books. It seems like just as quickly as this year began, it ended – and a lot happened in a short time.
As the saying goes, “time flies over us but leaves a shadow behind,” – and 2022 is guaranteed to cast a shadow over the new year. Now a shadow may seem negative, but it is merely the opposite. 2022’s “shadow” – or more so impact – is centered around innovation, research, and sustainability. This year’s ag trends showcased technology as a solution and the true power of leveraging technology in all areas of agriculture.
As we reflect on this past year, what stood out the most? What impacted the agriculture industry the most? What were some of the most pertinent ag trends of the year? Let’s dive into the 2022 ag trends that stood out most.
1. Macroeconomic Challenges: Dealing with Supply Chain Issues & the Labor Shortage
As most of us know, this year posed various difficulties for the agriculture industry – mostly stemming from macro issues. The combination of supply chain issues and the labor shortage has had detrimental effects on agriculture.
We have seen increased prices and decreased availability of countless resources – making it difficult to keep up with growing demand. With all this pressure on the backs of farmers, researchers, product developers, and agronomic leaders, embracing technology is the next step. And technology has stepped up to the plate this past year. The 2022 trends regarding ag technology revolve around solving macro issues like these. You may be thinking, how?
Well, ag technology works to directly combat the labor shortage by providing more with less. Instead of hiring an entire team to crop scout and collect data on field performance, ag drones and sensors provide a more efficient and accurate alternative. Ag drones and sensors not only cut the need for hired labor and human error but can also save roughly 25% of time spent collecting data.
And ag drones and sensors are only getting better with time – data collection has never been this fast and accurate. Advancements like the DGR System and the 65R go beyond the imagined capabilities of these technologies. Every minute matters, so providing these efficient options is revolutionary for early decision-making and compensating for fewer resources.
Now with supply chain issues, ag technology fuels early decisions and saves money. Instead of scrambling to get already limited and expensive products, technology provides the insights needed to make early-season decisions. These are just two of the many challenges that efficient and effective technological advancements solve.
In recent years, precision agriculture and related technologies have grown in popularity. While we witness this generational shift, technology use is expected to soar. (A key trend for 2023? time will tell!)
2. Effectively and Efficiently Using Data
The average farm produces an estimated 500,000 data points per day, which is expected to grow to four million by 2036. With all these data points, it is vital to determine what data truly matters. And luckily for us, advancements in ag technology make it easier to collect, sort, and analyze this data.
The right data is immeasurably valuable in ag research, powering agronomic decisions, and understanding your operation. A common trend in 2022 was this realization of just how much certain data matters. The data feeding into ag research is directly fueling real-world issues. So, collecting and evaluating it efficiently and precisely is crucial. This is where technology steps in.
Leveraging technology to assist in sorting and understanding the data that truly matters ensures faster and more reliable results. And in agriculture – we all understand how valuable time is. Seeking effective tools that collect and sort data quickly, allows for more time analyzing that data and making critical decisions throughout the season.
Download our free eBook, How to Use Data Analytics in Agriculture to Power Critical Decisions, to dive deeper into the importance of efficient and effective data.
3. Ag Technology for the Future
This year featured pivotal technological advancements (including those listed above) that are overcoming the challenges to help secure a future for agriculture and the entire world. With the population growing and resources dwindling, the demand for innovative solutions is rising. As the consequences of climate change catch up to us, sustainable solutions are dire.
We have recently seen a shift into more environmentally friendly, sustainable ag technology. In previous years, the concern was more so results for immediate problems. Now, with more recent worries about our environmental status – each industry is searching for more green options.
A common controversial topic posing the agriculture industry surrounds pesticides and fertilizer use. Remote sensing’s capabilities also extend to precise nitrogen application – reducing negative impacts like leaching and denitrification.
And with the advancements and prioritization of providing solutions, we will begin pushing toward a more sustainable future.
It is impossible to know exactly what the future holds, so continuous advancements will hopefully lead to a more sustainable and productive future. One thing we do know? 2022 was a year for the books. A year where we saw the agricultural community do what it does best – coming together and persevering, even when unpredictable curveballs are thrown. And we know that even with what 2023 and the years beyond may bring, this community will step up and build a better, more sustainable future while meeting the food productivity demands of our growing world.