06 July 2017
Modern farming depends on technology such as seed, fertiliser, pesticides, water, and machinery. These have formed the basis of the world’s food production systems for staples.
However, it has become increasingly clear to scientists, policymakers and development agencies that physical inputs alone did not guarantee that farmers can make best use of these inputs. Knowledge is required to make farms productive, farming practices efficient, and farm productivity more targeted.
At the same time, information-communication technology (ICT) has also increasingly affected the farming community. ICT is increasingly recognised as the means to capture and share knowledge and in the process, improve the efficiency of using production inputs.
For farming, a major challenge has been how to empower all farmers with the knowledge to use inputs effectively.
Agricultural technology (agtech), together with new digital knowledge capture techniques and new financial technology (fintech) groups, is fast changing farming by creating a new knowledge intensive agriculture. And this has implications for Singapore, which wants to boost the efficiency of farm use and improve its food security.
… Paul Teng is Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University. He formerly held leadership positions at The WorldFish Centre, The International Rice Research Institute and Monsanto Company. This is adapted from another piece in RSIS Commentary and part of a series on the upcoming World Agricultural Forum (WAF) on July 6-7 organised jointly by RSIS.
NTS Centre / Online / Print
Last updated on 11/07/2017