Agricultural Apps Helping to Feed the Masses in Latin America
As implausible as it may seem, Jonathan Webb’s ambitious and praiseworthy AppHarvest project to rebuild Kentucky’s post coal economy into “the agtech capital” of the United States has much to learn from the agricultural sector of the so-called “developing world” of Latin America and the Caribbean. Over the last five years more than 450 startups like SpaceAG (Perú), Be Green(Brazil), and Eiwa (Argentina) have emerged. Throughout these regions, using innovative bundled tech solutions of artificial intelligence, drones, geotagging, satellite imagery, and sensors, AG startups have been able to maximize yields, minimize irrigation water loss, control emissions , reduce use of chemical fertilizers, as well as promote urban farming. Food production demands—both for internal and external markets—plus technological innovations are pushing Latin American and Caribbean agricultural producers into the forefront of global farming. These agriculturalists have much to teach their North American counterparts in Kentucky and elsewhere.