Microsoft in collaboration with ICRISAT, developed a digital agriculture, where technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Cloud Machine Learning, Satellite Imagery and advanced analytics are empowering small-holder farmers to increase their income through higher crop yield and greater price control.
”Shifting weather patterns such as increase in temperature, changes in precipitation levels, and ground water density, can affect farmers, especially those who are dependent on timely rains for their crops. Leveraging the cloud and AI to predict advisories for sowing, pest control and commodity pricing, is a major initiative towards creating increased income and providing stability for the agricultural community. Microsoft is now taking AI in agriculture a step further. A collaboration with United Phosphorous (UPL), India’s largest producer of agrochemicals, led to the creation of the Pest Risk Prediction API that again leverages AI and machine learning to indicate in advance the risk of pest attack. Common pest attacks, such as Jassids, Thrips, Whitefly, and Aphids can pose serious damage to crops and impact crop yield. To help farmers take preventive action, the Pest Risk Prediction App, providing guidance on the probability of pest attacks was initiated. Microsoft has developed a multivariate agricultural commodity price forecasting model to predict future commodity arrival and the corresponding prices. The model uses remote sensing data from geo-stationary satellite images to predict crop yields through every stage of farming.” (According to the project website：https://news.microsoft.com/en-in/features/ai-agriculture-icrisat-upl-india/)
The sowing date is very critical to ensure that farmers harvest a good crop. AI-based sowing advisories lead to 30% higher yields. Pest attack prediction enables farmers to plan. This project will help reduce uncertainty and risk and increase crop yield.