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The Challenge

Japan’s population is aging. The average age of farmers in Japan is 67. The number of households with commercial farmers* has fallen drastically from 2.3 million in 2000 to 1.3 million in 2015, and is projected to decrease by half of that figure in the next ten years. Along with these trends, the problems of farmers giving up farming and outsourcing farm operations to others, along with cancellations of farmland that has been left fallow, have resulted in an increasing proportion of professional farmers and farming groups with little experience. With farmers facing a diverse array of challenges including proper management of fields scattered over large areas, improving crop yield and quality, reducing cost and labor, and creating higher added value for produce, support for farmers has become an urgent issue.


Solution

The skills that turn agriculture into a stronger business. In order to solve the issues facing agriculture in Japan and grow it into a stronger and more appealing business, we will need to further popularize the use of smart agriculture, which utilizes robotics and ICT to offer ultra-labor saving and higher quality in production.

Kubota has invested in comprehensive research of smart agriculture methods. Today, we are developing and providing solutions that enable highly profitable farm management. From cultivation to operational management, we are working toward advancements that generate a wide range of benefits.

Initiatives for enabling smart agriculture.

Kubota is now advancing initiatives toward the realization of smart agriculture, focusing on ultra-labor saving based on automation and precision farming based on the use of data.


Benefits

Automated and unmanned agricultural machinery can enable farmers to work even while navigating sloped fields without having to hold the steering wheel. In 2016, Kubota launched a rice-transplanter with a keeping straight function and a tractor equipped with automatic steering, and since then we have improved their accuracy for practical use. And with the introduction of the Agri Robo Combine Harvester, in 2018 we finally released GPS-enabled versions of all three major farm products – tractors, rice-transplanters, and combine harvesters. We will provide support systems to help overcome the challenges of decreasing labor force and aging population to make farming more robust and profitable.


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