Global Tech Jam: BroadbandUSA

In this video from the Global Tech Jam 2018, Jean Rice presents: BroadbandUSA.

In 2016, the U.S. had 2.1 million farms covering 911 million acres of land. These had an average size of 442 acres and about 99% of them were operated by families, according to the USDA National Agricultural Statistics (NASS). The FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) predicts that food production must increase by 70% by 2050 in order to feed the predicted world population. The agricultural industry is increasingly relying on “precision agriculture” to meet these challenges. According to the USDA, “Precision technologies—such as tractor guidance systems using a global positioning system (GPS), GPS soil and yield mapping, and variable-rate input applications (VRT)—help farms gather information on changing field conditions to adjust production practices.” Tapping into broadband wireless networks and embedding information technology (IT) devices in farm machinery such as tractors and harvesters, allow farmers to use “telematics” to optimize machine use for field preparation, precision planting, water optimization, harvesting and overall production efficiency Wearables for tracking the whereabouts and health of animals is another area under development. In addition, broadband enhances from competitiveness by providing an online platform to monitor real-time market prices and trends, purchase supplies, increase their customer base and market their products locally, regionally, nationally and globally.

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