Drones have been the topic of a lot of buzz the past few months, and rightfully so: the mechanical devices have the ability to improve efficiency in a seemingly endless number of ways for all types of industries. However, the coverage has mostly focused on the Federal Aviation Administration and its slow approval process, as publicly blasted by Amazon late last month. Afterwards, the FAA loosened its grip on the process, allowing drone testing by anyone as long as reasonable limitations were adhered to.
However, it would appear that the FAA hasn't completely lost its hold of the industry. Researchers at the University of Florida have been hoping to pair drones with Dutch sheppards and Belgian malinois to better detect lethal laurel wilt disease in avocado groves, as reported by The Packer. The dogs are the real star of the show, boasting a 90% success rate in finding affected trees. The dogs, however, have a limited range. By using drones to survey areas beforehand, the researchers hope to better target affected trees with the dogs. Unfortunately, the researchers must wait until August for the drones to be approved by the FAA before fully researching how the tandem can work together.
Farmers, in general, are responsible for large tracts of land with relatively light workforces. The ability to utilize an unmanned craft to identify crop issues would be a major plus for those in the farming industry. Startup tech company DroneDeploy is attempting to address the issue with its new app that automates the collection of data regarding growing conditions, water use and fertilizer applications by mapping the entirety of a farm. Afterwards, it creates an easy-to-read report that shows farmers were they need to focus most to ensure a healthy crop. Modern Farmer reports that it costs $99 and is available for Android and iOS, and that the program is compatible with a number of popular drone models available on the market.
For those worrying that robotic farming will eliminate jobs, there may be hope yet, especially in the agricultural sector. A new report from Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International entitled The Economic Impact of Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration in the United States argues that more than 70,000 jobs will be created during the first three years of drone integration, swelling to 100,000 by 2025. Most of the jobs, they reason, will be in the agricultural sector. Farmers may no longer be walking the fields for crop scouting, but that doesn't necessarily mean they will be replaced by a machine. Someone still needs to fly the drone.
It might not be great news for working border collies, though, as evidenced by this man using a drone to herd his flock of sheep.
Forbes examined 60 of the best brands across the U.S. for franchisees to invest in, partnering with franchise industry research firm FRANdata. To develop the rankings, researchers delved into the system sustainability, system demand, value for investment, franchisor support and franchisor stability for each brand.read more
McDonald’s is modernizing its locations around the world, introducing new menu items and expanding its technology offerings as part of an overall growth plan for the company.read more
Chris focuses on fresh, canned and frozen fruit and fresh and dried vegetables for the Food Institute Report. In addition, he assists in compiling data for various Food Institute publications throughout the year. He is a proud Rutgers University alumnus with a degree in English, and has a background in web writing for a variety of industries, including legal, foodservice and small-to-medium sized businesses. In his downtime you can find him watching New York Yankees baseball, hiking, enjoying live music and spending time with his dog Kaiden. He invites you to contact him via email at firstname.lastname@example.org to talk about anything food-related.
There are no comments, yet. Why don't you add one?
10 Mountainview Road
Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458
Food Institute reps are available to answer your questions
BECOME A MEMBER
For close to 90 years, The Food Institute has been the best "single source" for food industry executives, delivering actionable information daily via email updates, weekly through The Food Institute Report and via a comprehensive web research library. Our information gathering method is not just a "keyword search."