Sheep and beef farmers in New Zealand are missing out on the benefits of spatial technologies. According to research undertaken by the Eastern Institute of Technology (EIT) in New Zealand, farmers could vastly improve their businesses by investing in spatial products and applications.
Spatial technology and devices allow agricultural businesses to gain higher productivity and efficiency. For example, through the use of GPS-based products, machinery can be more effective by plotting efficient routes to spray or plough land. Other applications include livestock management products that automate optimal feeding and record keeping.
According to Ram Roy, a senior lecturer at EIT, the benefits from these technologies also include reduced costs, targeted spraying and better environmental protection.
Farmers in the sectors have so far ignored the technologies for a number of reasons Roy said.
“Some of the barriers in adopting these technologies include lack of awareness, unclear benefits and unwillingness in cost sharing,” he said.
Users who have adopted such technologies have reported productivity gains of up to 20 per cent, according to Roy.