What is Agritech? Agricultural Technology in a Nutshell

Agritech is the use of technology and technological innovation to improve the efficiency and output of agricultural processes. In other words, it is the application of technology to improve all elements of the farming and growing processes.

Applications of agritech are far-ranging and encompass several different types of agricultural and technological innovations. However, the aim of all these agritech technologies is the same – an attempt to grow more food in less space and/or with fewer inputs. 

Agritech also saves farmers time and money, by automating tasks and replacing much of the labor needed on a farming operation – which usually constitutes the highest cost input to a farming system. 

Here we explore some key industry-disrupting agritech examples and their applications.

Novel Farming Systems

Top Insect Farming Methods

Though not yet a very popular practice in the Western world, insect farming is a very sustainable agricultural practice. Not only does it require significantly fewer inputs than traditional animal agriculture – such as water, land, and feed – but it also yields a very high-quality protein that can be used for human or animal consumption. 

Rearing insects such as crickets is becoming increasingly popular for this very reason. Crickets can be eaten roasted, as a snack, or ground into a flour, to be used in baked goods. 

Black soldier fly farming is another popular method of insect farming, though its applications vary slightly. Black soldier fly larvae are incredible decomposers, meaning they can literally feed on nothing but organic waste. They don’t create any of their own waste in the process, and are themselves used as livestock feed. In effect, farmers can transform food waste into livestock feed by harnessing these critters to create a closed loop cycle.

Urban Farming

Urban farming is the practice of growing food in urban areas such as cities, building rooftops, or underground, for the purposes of commerce. Urban farming can take on many forms, but two of the most popular include urban and vertical farming.

Depending on the method used, urban agriculture has many advantages over traditional agriculture. Firstly, it can help communities achieve advancements in health by providing easy access to affordable, locally grown food, which is higher in nutrients than food with a large time lag between harvest and consumption.

Secondly, some urban farms are built with the sole purpose of training a local community. This brings additional economic prosperity to the region in the form of new jobs and increased income.

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