A LettuceBot can make more than 5,000 decisions a minute.
Where are we going? To farm equipment that replaces labor.
What the LettuceBot Knows
Using cameras, processors, and computer vision, the LettuceBot does planting, spacing and sizing. It creates a uniformity that is crucial for mechanized harvesting.
Here you can see the LettuceBot in action. (No need to look at all 3 minutes):
Strawberries Fields Forever
I’ve read that some growers need to breed berries with identical stem lengths for mechanical pickers. Others say they won’t be changing the fields. Through a new generation of equipment, GPS technology and stereo vision can pick the ripe berries.
Do take a look below:
Our Bottom Line: Farm Robotics
There are hundreds of thousands of immigrants in California helping to produce two-thirds of our nation’s fruits and nuts, If border enforcement and immigration policy become stricter, we wind up with a decrease in the supply of labor. The result? Robots become more attractive.
As economists, we can use two supply and demand graphs to display what might happen. You can see below a decrease in supply of farm workers. As a substitute for those workers, farm robots experience an increase in demand:
Do keep in mind that those farm robots could look like LettuceBots.
I should note that that I cannot confirm the current stage of farm mechanization. However, we can be sure that the use of robots will increase.