Food Insecurity is a Threat to Us All
According to this report on “How to Feed the World By 2050”, we’ll need a global increase of food production by 70% to feed the growing population which is projected to be at 9.1 billion by 2050. Unfortunately, cropland and arable soil are finite resources. Fortunately though, the terms “AgTech” and “Food Tech” are now the norm at conferences and for professionals in the industry.
Farmers, growers, ranchers, producers, and even consultants within the agriculture industry all know that as a whole, the industry is facing tough environmental challenges from droughts, wildfires, rising costs of fertilizers, to lack of resources causing threats to their personal businesses. A lot of farmers are having to come up with ways to supplement their income due to bad conditions and unpredictable weather.
New innovations across all aspects of the production process will enable a more streamlined supply chain from field to consumer. New technology across the entire supply chain can enable brands to meet the consumer demand for healthier products and more transparency about what they’re buying. Yet there are many financial and economical obstacles to the adoption of these new technologies into the real-life, day-to-day work of the professionals that need them to create change.
Market Research and AgTech
From precision agriculture to innovative farming techniques, and regenerative soil practices to autonomous machinery, technology is here to help solve the looming food insecurity dilemma. Much research has been done by engineers and scientists to create these innovations, yet more market research is needed to not only increase the scalability of these technologies but to also get them adopted across the market and ultimately by the end-users of these new technologies.
Building trust between the farmers and the AgTech innovators creating new technologies is imperative to getting more early adopters on board and creating change within the industry. The growing technology and innovations in the industry are impacting the small producers greatly through things such as new supply chain models imposing greater accountability, and dramatically increased requirements for sustainability and traceability.
Farmers Don’t Have Free Time
Between environmental obstacles and the fact that most producers and farmers run their own family-owned businesses, they quite simply (and obviously) don’t have enough time in the day to solve a global crisis on their own, let alone incorporate a whole new piece of equipment or technology into their budget or system. They’re busy out in the field trying to solve production issues and business problems in real-time to meet yearly goals.
The best way to gain adoption is to meet farmers where they are. There’s a stark difference between an engineer who worked on a drone designed to monitor air quality and a farmer whose iPad is receiving data from that drone. Agriculture brands can’t rely on conferences and salesmen alone for a successful go-to-market strategy; some already have tons of data from solutions they’ve bought into and aren’t sure what to do with it or how to move forward and become better from it.
User experience research, in-field product testing, qualitative discussions, or even AI-assisted research is needed to get feedback directly from the laborers in the industry in order to make AgTech products both more accessible and user friendly. Moreso, research is needed to ensure the AgTech companies’ marketing messaging is clear and trustworthy, their company mission is relatable and aligned with their customers, all so customer apprehension is minimized.
Gaining Their Trust
Ag Access has over 20 years of experience conducting agriculture research in sectors all across the industry; with this experience came the fostering of reliable relationships with the professionals that put in the most labor. In short, we know how to talk to farmers – and they trust us when we call on them. And not just farmers. Specialty growers, seed consultants, ranchers, poultry producers, cattle veterinarians, and more all choose to be a part of the 400k member Ag Access community to voice their opinions and give feedback just to help further the industry and create better products.
Facilitating research methods to gain both qualitative and quantitative data with actual targeted customers and users will be the key to discovering how to scale to the masses a new, complex product or service that would greatly benefit the food chain – and the growing population. Not everyone is an early adopter, but finding the early adopters in your customer base with a segmentation strategy would help inform important decisions around product development.
There is great tradition within the agriculture industry and conducting the necessary research is imperative to avoid apprehension, successfully introduce new innovations into the market, and thus allow innovators to gain adoption and create industry change to address the global issues facing us all.
Ag Access is your trusted research logistics ally in the agricultural and animal health space.
Contact us today to see how we can help your research plans.