IoT to be applied to agriculture

According to Professor, Dr. Chu Pham Ngoc Son, Vice Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City Union of Science and Technology Associations, there is no way to improve production but to implement technology.

The system to monitor the development of a vegetable farm, implementing IoT in agriculture with Taiwanese technologies(Photo: SGGP)

The system to monitor the development of a vegetable farm, implementing IoT in agriculture with Taiwanese technologies(Photo: SGGP)

He also insists that IoT is used more and more in agriculture, showing that farmers are paying increasing attention to technology, and this will help this sector creates more valuable produce to meet future technological standards. 
It is impossible to step aside
The Fourth Industrial Revolution has forced all fields to renovate or upgrade so as to increase efficiency and not to be left behind. Therefore, the topic of “Smart agriculture in the 4th Industrial Revolution” has attracted much attention from scientists, manages, as well as technology companies. 
According to Mr. Vu Anh Tuan, General Secretary of HCMC Computer Association (HCA), despite being considered a super-city, Ho Chi Minh City still possesses a huge amount of agricultural land, which is an advantage for agricultural production. “The implementation of IoT (Internet of Things) into agriculture is not too complicated at present. All we need is the installation of sensor systems and data management in a computer or a mobile device. The price of necessary IoT equipment is not too expensive either as there are more and more businesses, both domestic and international, to supply them to people in need”, claimed Mr. Vu Anh Tuan. 
The 4th Industrial Revolution has seen a boom in breakthrough technologies in different fields of big data, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and specially IoT, hence the need to choose suitable technologies. However, despite being a strong agricultural country, Vietnam’s vision as well as its technological application is still limited. Therefore, it is necessary to build a smart agricultural platform.
What farmers need the most when technology is implemented in agriculture is clean produce. It is essential to move towards automatic farming via the use of IoT while allowing the tracing of produce’s origin in order to both increase performance and meet the market’s demands. In particular, the application of smart agriculture in Ho Chi Minh City is also part of the smart city project.  
Humans are still the core
According to Mr. Tran Viet Hua, Head of Consultants in digitalizing – Vietnam Microsoft Company, with the popularity of the Internet at the moment, users do not need to have a server or management software thanks to cloud computing. From the data system, users can actively monitor their farm. They can even use outdated mobile phones having IoT app installed to increase the productivity and quality of their farm. 
Ms. Le Thi Quy Nien, representative of IBM in Vietnam, shared that IBM is the pioneer company to participate in IoT world and to apply it in agriculture. At present, the company is providing many platforms for the implementation of IoT in agriculture like precise watering systems, water and fertilizer adjustment systems in arable farms.
This company also has a solution frame for farming via analyzing input data to raise farmers’ awareness as well as support them in decision making regarding more effective production and management by applying a network of many monitoring devices (both drones and robots), sensor systems, weather forecasting systems, GPS. 
IBM’s solution is to create a management system to meet the need of collecting, processing, saving, and providing necessary data for daily activities of a farm via analyzing input data from various sources like precise watering and fertilizing schedules in accordance with the growth of plants, weather forecasts, pesticide uses.

Using this integrated system, farmers can control the changes through time and space (weather, growth process of plants, disease, etc.) so that they are able to improve the economic efficiency of their investment while minimizing harmful effects from the environment.
According to Professor, Doctor Chu Pham Ngoc Son, there is a surplus of solutions for agriculture now, so the most important fact is the selection of the most suitable and effective one. 
Regarding Enabling Intelligent Farming, Mr. Tran Viet Huan also shared that when implementing IoT in Agriculture, farmers are changing their production methods from traditional to modern ones while consumers can access necessary information on their purchases.

At present, the application of IoT into agricultural models is quite simple. All we need are a sensor system to measure numbers and a cloud computing environment to save those figures.

By BA TAN - Translated by THANH TAM

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