Farm Tender

Ag Tech Sunday - Harvest robots: opportunity, tailwinds, headwinds, and predictions

By Walt Duflock

Labor remains a major challenge for farmers — there’s not enough of it and it’s getting more expensive all the time. The obvious solution is robots — they do the work that humans do with fewer breaks and much less of an annual price increase from regulations. The challenges are real — robots are hard to build, expensive to make, often only service one particular function (i.e. weeding, harvesting, or planting), and even more often only serve one particular crop type (i.e. most harvest robots can do one thing really well but there’s no second act — wine grape harvesters do wine grapes, apple harvesters do apples, and nothing does both).

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