Precision Agriculture In China

China Agriculture University (CAU) in Beijing has a Precision Agriculture Laboratory that employs numerous professors and about 90 doctorate-level graduates, not just to learn from everything they can import from the “West”, but to leapfrog wherever they think useful for their country. Considering the economic and technological achievements of China the last decade, I would not bet against them succeeding in their ambitions.
Precision agriculture is a fact in China — not just in university research centers, but also “in the field.” The Provincial Authorities in Heilongjiang Province in Manchuria have embarked on a massive program to test precision agriculture “on the ground” in state farms (60,000 to 70,000 thousand acres!). Here are a few interesting specifics:
The board room in the HongXing farm machinery administration building displayed on a 8-foot by 12-foot projection screen TV the GIS of the farm’s fields, the data of previous and planned treatments, and in real time (through a telemetry link) the tractor cabin of the operator working the field.
The Daxijiang state farm has bought six sets (worth over $1 million each) with US made green and red pieces of the following equipment: tracked tractor with GPS and automatic steering, a huge conservation tillage implement, an air-seeder, a self-propelled liquid sprayer with automatic steering and variable rate capabilities, a combine harvester with automatic steering and a yield monitor. Each set is due to manage 10,000 acres, for a total of 60,000 acres. That farm used to have 150 pieces of Chinese made farm equipment to do the same job.
Farm managers also spoke about (but did not show us) thousands of acres of organic vegetables. A little probing revealed that a lot of produce is sold to a major US retailer. I could not ascertain whether this was for export, or for sales to the newly affluent city dwellers in Beijing and Shanghai. Probing a bit more, I learned Carrefour, the French competitor to that US retailer, pays 20% more for its organic vegetables, “but asks more information” and wants “performance guarantees.” We know French are picky eaters, and US consumers prefer “the lowest price,” but could it be that when one buys produce, one ultimately gets what one pays for. Just like for farm equipment, or baby toys for that matter.
Marc Vanacht is principal of AG Business Consultants in Clarkson Valley, MO. Share your comments with Marc via email at [email protected].

Leave a Reply

Asia Stories
Tomato-crop-India
AsiaIndia: Using Artificial Intelligence for the Good of Farmers
July 11, 2018
After graduating from IIT-Madras, the first thing that Vivek Rajkumar did was to buy four acres near Thiruvananthapuram and start Read More
Canton-Fair
AsiaChina’s Canton Fair Sheds Light on Agricultural Technology Opportunities
May 7, 2018
Last month I visited China to learn more about agriculture by attending the largest import and export fairs — the Read More
Indian-Agriculture
AsiaIndian IoT Platform for Pre and Post Harvest Raises Seed Round
April 19, 2018
Indian startup AgNext has raised an undisclosed seed round led by India-focused Agtech VC Omnivore Partners along with Singaporean angel Read More
AmericasSciFi in Ag: Precision Aerial Planting Next Up for Ag?
March 20, 2018
What do trees, drones, and minefields all have in common? Precision aerial planting. A concept first introduced in the 1930’s Read More
Trending Articles
ISPA-Yoshua-Bengio
EventsHighlights from the 14th International Conference on Precision Agriculture
July 9, 2018
The 14th International Conference on Precision Agriculture (ICPA) presented by the International Society of Precision Agriculture (ISPA) was held in Montreal, Read More
Topcon X30 Console in cab
EventsAssociation Seeks Definitive Definition of “Precision Agriculture” — What’s Your Vote?
July 2, 2018
More than two-dozen definitions of precision agriculture have been identified through the years — but which is the best and Read More
AmericasRaven Name to Grace New South Dakota State University Facility
June 27, 2018
According to a press release issued by the company, Raven Industries was recognized today in the naming of South Dakota Read More
dropcopter
DronesNew York Apple Orchard Claims World First in Pollination by Drone
June 18, 2018
Beak & Skiff Apple Orchard in LaFayette, NY, is the first orchard in the world to use drones to pollinate Read More
JDandPessl
Sensors/IoTJohn Deere, Pessl Instruments Team Up to Create Opportunities
June 18, 2018
John Deere is best known for its line of tractors, combines, sprayers, and implements. However, in an effort to help Read More
Matt-Waits-featured
Decision Support SoftwareSST’s Matt Waits: Innovative Data Solutions Key to Transforming Global Agriculture
May 31, 2018
Proagrica, part of RELX Group, earlier this year acquired U.S.-based precision agriculture solutions company, SST Software, in a move set Read More
Latest News
Uncategorized2018 CTIC Conservation In Action Tour: Bringing Back th…
July 20, 2018
We here at PrecisionAg.com and PrecisionAg Professional recently had the opportunity to attend the 2018 Conservation Technology Information Center’s(West Lafeyette, Read More
Tools & Smart EquipmentCanadian Planter Manufacturer Purchases Harvest Interna…
July 19, 2018
Seeding and planting technology innovator Clean Seed has signed an agreement to strategically acquire U.S. planting equipment manufacturer Harvest International, Read More
Data ManagementInfoAg News: Farmobile Launches DataEngine, Streamlines…
July 17, 2018
Busy times these days out in Overland Park Leawood, KS, for ag data startup Farmobile, as they continue to – Read More
Agrible
Grower Services & SolutionsNutrien Drops $63 Million to Acquire Agrible
July 16, 2018
Nutrien announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Agrible for total consideration of $63 million, Read More
Industry NewsFarmobile Acquires Prime Meridian, Taps Cubbage as New …
July 13, 2018
Farmobile today announced an agreement to acquire the assets of Prime Meridian, a precision agriculture data management company based in Read More
group-photo
DronesPrecision Agriculture Takes Flight at North Carolina St…
July 13, 2018
Take a walk into the Suggs Laboratory for Precision Agriculture and Machine Systems and it’s hard not to be impressed, Read More
Skeketee-IC-Weeder
DronesAutomated Weeders Have Arrived in Vegetable Fields
July 12, 2018
The vegetable production areas of the Central Coast of California have lifted vegetable cultivation to a high art, writes Richard Read More
AgJunction, InfoAg 2014, Autosteer, GPS
Industry NewsAgJunction Settles with Raven in Patent Infringement Su…
July 12, 2018
AgJunction Inc., a leader in advanced guidance and autosteering, has settled a patent infringement lawsuit it filed against Raven Industries, Read More
Retailer-Grower-tablet
Business ManagementTaking Measure of the Precision Agriculture Program: 6 …
July 12, 2018
In the overall agriculture market, the rhetoric surrounding emerging technology over the past half-decade has been nothing short of breathless. Read More
raven-slingshot-job-generator-job-sync-1
Industry NewsNew Raven Slingshot Advancements Will Help Save Time, R…
July 11, 2018
Raven Industries, Inc. has announced several new services available on the Slingshot and Viper 4 platforms: Job Generator and Job Read More
Onsite-logo
Industry NewsAgIntegrated Acquires Exclusive Licence to Satshot’s Im…
July 11, 2018
AgIntegrated, Inc. (AGI), a leader in precision ag data integration and software development, and Satshot, a leader and pioneer in Read More
Australian Harvest
Australia/New ZealandAustralian Agritech Plants Blockchain for Efficiency
July 11, 2018
“Agritech” at one time would have meant new equipment such as tractors and combine harvesters, but today it refers to Read More
Tomato-crop-India
AsiaIndia: Using Artificial Intelligence for the Good of Fa…
July 11, 2018
After graduating from IIT-Madras, the first thing that Vivek Rajkumar did was to buy four acres near Thiruvananthapuram and start Read More
BrightFarms
Industry NewsForbes List of Innovative Ag-Tech Companies Includes Gr…
July 9, 2018
Forbes magazine recently posted a list of the 25 most innovative ag-tech startups in 2018, which includes a few companies Read More
AmericasNutrien Ag Solutions Brand, New Digital Platform Launch…
July 9, 2018
Nutrien (formerly Crop Production Services) has officially rebranded its retail business to Nutrien Ag Solutions, aligning the company’s retail operations Read More
ISPA-Yoshua-Bengio
EventsHighlights from the 14th International Conference on Pr…
July 9, 2018
The 14th International Conference on Precision Agriculture (ICPA) presented by the International Society of Precision Agriculture (ISPA) was held in Montreal, Read More
TerrAvion
Industry NewsTerrAvion Integrates Aerial Imagery with John Deere Ope…
July 6, 2018
TerrAvion, Inc., a large volume provider of aerial imagery to agriculture, has announced an integration to allow TerrAvion’s aerial imagery Read More
Farmer-Tablet
Data ManagementAgriculture’s Next Breakthrough: New Technologies…
July 3, 2018
We live in an exciting time in agriculture. Not only is technology advancing rapidly, but the understanding and comprehension of Read More