Precision Agriculture

  • IASbaba
  • October 30, 2020
  • 0
UPSC Articles
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Topic: General Studies 2,3:

  • Different types of irrigation and irrigation systems 
  • Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life 

Precision Agriculture


  • It is an approach to farm management that uses information technology (IT) to ensure that the crops and soil receive exactly what they need for optimum health and productivity. 
  • It is an approach where inputs are utilised in precise amounts to get increased average yields, compared to traditional cultivation techniques.
  • The goal of PA is to ensure profitability, sustainability and protection of the environment. 
  • PA is also known as satellite agriculture, as-needed farming and site-specific crop management (SSCM).
  • Precision agriculture relies upon specialized equipment, software and IT services. 
  • The approach includes accessing real-time data about the conditions of the crops, soil and ambient air, along with other relevant information such as hyper-local weather predictions, labor costs and equipment availability.

Advantages precision farming

  • Helps increase agriculture productivity in sustainable manner
  • Prevents soil degradation
  • Reduction of chemical application in crop production
  • Efficient use of water resources
  • Dissemination of modern farm practices to improve quality, quantity and reduced cost of production
  • Developing favourable attitudes
  • Precision farming changing the socio-economic status of farmers

Precision farming in India

  • Some of the schemes like PMKSY’s (Per Drop More Crop) involve Precision Agriculture practices.
  • The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) has formulated a project entitled “SENSAGRI: SENsor based Smart AGRIculture”.
  • The major objective is to develop indigenous prototype for drone based crop and soil health monitoring system using hyperspectral remote sensing (HRS) sensors. 
  • Drone technology is also being used. It has ability for smooth scouting over farm fields, gathering precise information and transmitting the data on real time basis. 
  • Mobile apps are being used to provide farmers with weather information and provide early warning. 

Drawbacks of precision farming

  • High cost
  • Lack of technical expertise knowledge and technology
  • Not applicable or difficult/costly for small land holdings
  • Heterogeneity of cropping systems and market imperfections


  • The need of the hour is to adopt state of the art technology to make agriculture sustainable and profitable.
  • Agricultural renaissance can take shape on a strong digital foundation.
  • Adoption of technology will help in sustaining food security and enhanced livelihood opportunities. 
  • In addition, the farming community needs to diversify and take up allied activities like fisheries, dairy and poultry as well to double the on-farm incomes.

Connecting the dots:

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