Importance of computers in the field of Agriculture:


E-Agriculture is an emerging field focusing on the enhancement of agricultural and rural development through improved information and communication processes. More specifically, e-Agriculture involves the conceptualization, design, development, evaluation and application of innovative ways to use information and communication technologies (ICT) in the rural domain, with a primary focus on agriculture. E-Agriculture is a relatively new term and we fully expect its scope to change and evolve as our understanding of the area grows.

E-Agriculture is one of the action lines identified in the declaration and plan of action of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS). The "Tunis Agenda for the Information Society," published on 18 November 2005, emphasizes the leading facilitating roles that UN agencies need to play in the implementation of the Geneva Plan of Action. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has been assigned the responsibility of organizing activities related to the action line under C.7 ICT Applications on E-Agriculture.

The main phases of the agriculture industry are: Crop cultivation, Water management, Fertilizer Application, Pest management, Harvesting, Post-harvest handling, Transporting of food/food products, Packaging, Food preservation, Food processing/value addition, Food quality management, Food safety, Food storage, Food marketing.

All stakeholders of agriculture industry need information and knowledge about these phases to manage them efficiently. Any system applied for getting information and knowledge for making decisions in any industry should deliver accurate, complete, concise information in time or on time. The information provided by the system must be in user-friendly form, easy to access, cost-effective and well protected from unauthorized accesses.

Information and Communication Technology (ICT) can play a significant role in maintaining the above mentioned properties of information as it consists of three main technologies. They are: Computer Technology, Communication Technology and Information Management Technology. These technologies are applied for processing, exchanging and managing data, information and knowledge. The tools provided by ICT are having ability to:
  • Record text, drawings, photographs, audio, video, process descriptions, and other information in digital formats, 
  • Produce exact duplicates of such information at significantly lower cost, 
  • Transfer information and knowledge rapidly over large distances through communications networks. 
  • Develop standardized algorithms to large quantities of information relatively rapidly. 
  • Achieve greater interactivity in communicating, evaluating, producing and sharing useful information and knowledge. 

Submitted by: M. Dela Cruz
(IV- Arroyo, CNHS)

Same article submitted by:

P. Gurrobat
(IV - Quirino, CNHS)