Salinas, California is creating a global model for the integration of artificial intelligence and automation into the world of agriculture, WIRED reported yesterday.
As American farms struggle with labor shortages, reporter Matt Simon describes how companies such as Taylor Farms and Hahn Family Wines are using sophisticated robots and sensors not only to make harvesting more efficient, but to take on some of the tasks that humans are less able to do. What’s more, this agtech movement is creating more high tech jobs as farm workers aren’t losing their jobs to robots, but instead working “in tandem” with them.
“Here in the Salinas Valley, farmers and tech types are teaming up to turn this into a kind of Silicon Valley for agriculture,” Simon writes.
Just as inventions like the plow and combine harvester revolutionized the agriculture industry, these new automated techniques are leading the next key shift in agriculture: data. “[Artificial intelligence] can’t go anywhere without data,” the article states. With smarter farms, farmers are able to conserve precious resources and produce more food on the same amount of land–which is critical for a feeding a world that could grow to 10 billion people by 2050.
You can learn more about some of the machines in the Salinas Valley that are transforming the agriculture industry in this video from WIRED.