State agriculture officials from across the U.S. have unanimously called for continued development of unmanned aerial system (UAS) technology for use in agricultural production.
‘This technology is part of the future of agriculture and will enhance our food safety, as well as our national and global food supply,’ comment members of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA). ‘While UAS technology is a valuable tool in agriculture, the use of UAS technology must recognize and respect the privacy of agriculture producers and American citizens.’
Prepared and submitted by North Dakota Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring, the policy statement says, ‘adoption of UAS technology will allow farmers to monitor their acreage, mitigate crop stressors and manage crop progress.’
‘Imaging from [UAS] will allow farmers to combine their crop data with advanced crop mapping,’ Goehring says. ‘Monitoring fertilizer and pesticide application will pinpoint the most advantageous times for application while helping prevent runoff and drift.’
Goehring adds that the new technology promises to help producers be good stewards of the land by minimizing inputs and maximizing production.
‘This technology is advancing on technical, scientific, governmental and educational levels, yet many people are understandably wary of it,’ Goehring says. ‘UAS technology needs to be addressed by the agriculture community in order to effectively manage and utilize its integration into the industry. NASDA supports a science-based and calculated approach to this technology.’