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News: Recently, the Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers' Welfare launched “The Eleventh Agricultural Census (2021-22).”
• Agriculture Census is conducted every 5 years.
• Entire Census operation is conducted in three phases and operational holding is taken as a statistical unit at micro level for data collection.
• Agricultural Census is the main source of information on a variety of agricultural parameters at a relatively minute level, such as the number and area of operational holdings, their size, class-wise distribution, land use, tenancy and cropping pattern, etc.
• The field work of the agricultural census will start in August 2022. This is the first time that data collection for agricultural census will be conducted on smartphones and tablets, so that data is available in time.
How will work be carried out during 11 th census?
• Use of digital land records like land title records and survey reports
• Collection of data through app/software using smartphone/tablet.
• Complete enumeration of all villages in states with non-land records during Phase-I as done in states having land records.
• Real time monitoring of progress and processing.
• Most of the States have digitized their land records and surveys, which will further accelerate the collection of agricultural census data. The use of digitized land records and the use of mobile apps for data collection will enable the creation of a database of operational holdings in the country.
What is Digital agriculture?
• It involves use of Information and Communication technology and data ecosystem to support the development and delivery of timely, targeted information and services to make farming profitable and sustainable while delivering safe, nutritious and affordable food for all.
• For example, the practice of Precision agriculture where inputs are utilized in precise amounts to get increased average yields, compared to traditional techniques of agriculture. Such practice can only be done if prerequisite data is available that can be processed for betterment of farmers.
• Use of Biotechnology in agriculture helps in several ways which includes altering living organisms, improve plants or animals, or develop microorganisms for specific agricultural uses.
• Use of Digital technologies that can help reach out to farmers in no time during emergencies, use of robotics and drone technologies etc.