Getting Farmers to Embrace Modern Technology
One of the ways in which we can improve agricultural productivity is by getting farmers to embrace modern technology. But farmers tend to be conservative folks, who are not so eager to embrace new things. So getting farmers to embrace modern technology is not likely to be easy. But it can be done. There are parts of the world where it has been done successfully. And it can therefore be done anywhere – we just need to use the right approach.
In practical terms, to get farmers to embrace modern technology, we will need to:
- Demonstrate the benefits clearly: farmers are more likely to embrace modern technology if they get to a point of seeing it as something that can improve their productivity significantly.
- Organize training seminars: there are farmers who are unable to embrace modern technology because of tech-phobia. But this can be overcome through proper training.
- Organize proper financing: one common barrier that keeps farmers from embracing modern technology is that of finance. You may find farmers who have become persuaded that modern technology can be helpful to them. Yet due to lack of money, they end up not adopting the technology. So it is critical to organize proper financing. Like if the farmers are given loans to finance the acquisition of modern technology (which they can then repay in small installments), it will be easier for them to embrace the modern technology. Remember, farmers are folks who rely on their agricultural output to get all the money they need. They are not like salaried employees, whose finances are more predictable. A farmer is not like, say, a US postal service employee — who is assured of getting a paycheck every month through the liteblue human resources portal. It is easier for the said employee to keep on putting money into new stuff, occasionally even through loans guaranteed by liteblue usps paystubs. With farmers, the finances tend to be less predictable – hence the need for special financing arrangements. To put it bluntly, if we don’t make special financing arrangements, the vast majority of farmers will never be in a position to afford modern technology – even if they desire it.