Millennials encouraged to go into smart farming
This as the country’s farmers, whose average age ranges from 57 to 60 years old, will soon bid farewell to farming due to old age.
STAR/ File
Millennials encouraged to go into smart farming
Louise Maureen Simeon (The Philippine Star) - November 22, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines aims to transform the local farm sector into a competitive, science- and technology-backed industry, managed by young innovative Filipinos.

This as the country’s farmers, whose average age ranges from 57 to 60 years old, will soon bid farewell to farming due to old age.

“It will be only a matter of time before they retire, and thereafter we see a decline in the 10-million farmer workforce that feeds our countrymen,” said Agriculture Secretary William Dar.

“Engaging the youth is imperative to sustain our progress towards a fully food-secure nation,” he said.

To lure the younger generation, Dar said the DA is embarking on a technological transformation program aiming at an Agriculture 4.0 that will digitalize the country’s agriculture and fishery sector.

“The best way to keep the wheels of innovation moving is by influencing the younger generation to take interest in the vast and fascinating world of science,” he said.

At a time when technological sophistication defines competition, the Filipino youth is believed to offer so much in the agenda.

“We wish to see young Filipino farmers and agripreneurs help Philippine agriculture shift from traditional farming into a modern, industrialized and competitive sector that employs innovative approaches and modern technologies,” Dar said.

“With technology, we envision smart farms being built and run by the millennials. We want to bring dignity and prosperity to farming, thus enticing more people into agriculture,” he said.

Agriculture 4.0 aims to embrace opportunities of the Fourth Industrial Revolution that employs modern technologies like hydroponics, genetic modification, blockchain, drones, powerful data analytics, and nanotechnology to increase and sustain food productivity, quality, and incomes of producers.

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