Delivering pesticide reduction
The European Commission put forward a target to reduce pesticides‘ risk and use by 50% by 2030. Digital farming can be part of the toolbox to achieve this goal. This was also acknowledged by the European Parliament’s Panel for the Future of Science and Technology (STOA): in an in-depth analysis on “Farming without plant protection products” (available here) published in March 2019, STOA concluded that “Precision farming, including remote sensing with unmanned aerial vehicles, can also contribute to more targeted application and reduction of PPP use“.
Already in 2014, a research conducted for the European Parliament considered that “Precision agriculture is an information-based, decision-making approach to farm management designed to improve the agricultural process by precisely managing each step. In this manner, PA can provide a management approach optimizing both agricultural production and profitability – which is the key goal of most farming enterprises. Additionally, part of profitability can come from the reduced use of inputs (machinery, labour, fertilizer, chemicals, seeds, water, energy, etc.), leading to both cost savings and also environmental benefits.“
- “Socio-economic value of glyphosate: A review of EU studies assessing the value of glyphosate to the agriculture industry”; L. Garcia-Perez, Harriet Illman, S. Wynn; 13 May 2020
- European Parliament, STOA Panel, In-depth analysis “Farming without plant protection products”
- European Parliament, Directorate General for Internal Policies, Policy Department B: Structural and Cohesion Policies, Agriculture and Rural Development, “Precision agriculture: an opportunity for EU farmers – Potential support with the CAP 2014-2020”