Managing soil variability at different spatial scales as a basis for precision agriculture

Jetse Stoorvogel, Lammert Kooistra, J. Bouma

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review


A wide variety of farming systems occur in different agroecological zones of the world and focus on the production of dairy and crops. The advance of information and communication technology (ICT) is causing fundamental and rapid change to farming enterprises all over the world, although most developments have occurred thus far in industrialized, developed countries. The introduction of ICT is most clearly evident in dairy farming (for a good overview of recent developments see e.g., Endres 2013). Sensors for individual cows allow fine-tuning of feeding patterns as a function of milk production and also allow early detection of infections. Milk robots focus on production patterns of individual cows and allow milking at different times during the day. For each individual animal, variation as a function of time governs the monitoring process. ICT is fundamentally changing dairy farming and new technology is being rapidly accepted by dairy farmers despite significant initial investments because feeding costs are significantly reduced, cows are healthier, and the drudgery of having to milk cows twice a day becomes part of history. Most important, however, is that farmers’ net incomes tend to increase substantially.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSoil-Specific Farming
Subtitle of host publicationPrecision Agriculture
EditorsRattan Lal, B.A. Stewart
Place of PublicationBoca Raton
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages36
ISBN (Electronic)9780429172496
ISBN (Print)9781482245332
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


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