Hegedus, Paul B.
Maxwell, Bruce D.
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In response to global calls for sustainable food production, we identify two diverging paradigms to address the future of agriculture. We explore the possibility of uniting these two seemingly diverging paradigms of production-oriented and ecologically oriented agriculture in the form of precision agroecology. Merging precision agriculture technology and agroecological principles offers a unique array of solutions driven by data collection, experimentation, and decision support tools. We show how the synthesis of precision technology and agroecological principles results in a new agriculture that can be transformative by (1) reducing inputs with optimized prescriptions, (2) substituting sustainable inputs by using site-specific variable rate technology, (3) incorporating beneficial biodiversity into agroecosystems with precision conservation technology, (4) reconnecting producers and consumers through value-based food chains, and (5) building a just and equitable global food system informed by data-driven food policy. As a result, precision agroecology provides a unique opportunity to synthesize traditional knowledge and novel technology to transform food systems. In doing so, precision agroecology can offer solutions to agriculture’s biggest challenges in achieving sustainability in a major state of global change.
Duff, H.; Hegedus, P.B.; Loewen, S.; Bass, T.; Maxwell, B.D. Precision Agroecology. Sustainability 2022, 14, 106. https://doi.org/ 10.3390/su14010106