Australia’s agricultural industry began in the 17th century after the British used the landscape as a penal colony wih a huge capacity for food production. The industry’s growth in productivity has been tremendous as it now has the capability to provide a broad variety of crop and meat products; making it the strongest sector of the country’s economy. However, centuries of land clearing operations, tilling, livestock grazing and water extraction had subsequently caused the degradation of the soils.
Actually, Australia’s land is semi-arid to begin with, dominated by Outbacks or deserts. While the farmers succeeded in providing about 90% of the food consumed by the population, the poor farming practices and lack of land and water conservation policies had led to soil degradation.
Thankfully, the years saw new Australian governments that introduced agricultural reforms. The actions taken included the development and introduction of advanced farming techniques and technologies. While the country was previously cited by the World Wildlife Fund Living Planet as having infertile soil that cannot sustainably support the lifestyle of Australians, the conditions have changed tremendously. Currently, Aussie farmers have been producing food in quantities that also enabled the agricultural industry to export food.
Over the past 2 decades, from year 2000 to 2020, Australia has become one of the world’s leading exporters of food. Reports have it that Australian farmers are currently exporting 65% to 70% of its produce, to other countries.
Examples of Technologies Used by Aussie Farmers to Sustainably Boost Production
More than twenty years ago, Australian policy makers faced increasing pressure to think of ways of optimizing land productivity and usability but without further degrading tne soils, the other natural resouces and the environment as a whole. As much as possible, new methods must be developed in ways that will produce more while using less resources.
Through the years, farming technologies were developed using drones outfitted with sensors capable of monitoring soil health, crop health, soil moisture levels, as well as to detect weed growth and the presence of pests. The various drone technologies enabled farmers to take action in improving the overall wellbeing of their crops, including preventing negative elements from destroying their fields.
Software hooked up with the drone sensors helped irrigators and farmers determine water and moisture levels while also analyzing soil health. That way, water resources can be used sustainably and more effectively. The information provided by agricultural software helps farmers, livestock producers and manufacturers save valuable time and money that can have better use elsewhere.
Australia’s soil health is also valuable to the structural integrity of the country’s buildings and various construction projects. That is why construction companies offer soil stabilisation solutions known as underpinning techniques. The purpose of which is to enhance the quality and ability of land to support tne weight being transferred by the building to the ground.