The Ultimate Agtech Glossary: 100 Key Terms to Know

Hunter Weber

April 10, 2023 at 4:11 pm | Updated April 10, 2023 at 4:11 pm | 7 min read

As agriculture becomes increasingly technology-driven, it’s essential to understand the new terminology emerging in the field. Agtech, or agricultural technology, is a rapidly growing industry transforming how we produce and distribute food. From precision agriculture and biotechnology to farm sensors and robotics, agtech encompasses a wide range of innovations that are changing the face of agriculture.

To navigate this complex landscape, it’s important to have a clear understanding of the key terms and concepts. In this article, we’ll provide an overview of 100 agtech terms you need to know so that you can stay up to date with the latest developments in this exciting field.

Precision agriculture: Using technology and data to optimize farming practices.

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IoT (Internet of Things): The network of physical devices and sensors that can be connected and communicate with each other.

Crop monitoring: The use of technology to track crop health and growth.

Data analytics: The process of analyzing large sets of data to gain insights and make informed decisions.

Machine learning: A type of artificial intelligence that allows computers to learn from data and improve over time.

Robotics: The use of robots to automate tasks in agriculture, such as harvesting.

Drones: Unmanned aerial vehicles used to collect data and images of crops.

Biotechnology: The use of living organisms or parts of organisms to create products or improve agriculture practices.

Hydroponics: A method of growing plants without soil, using a nutrient-rich water solution instead.

Vertical farming: Growing crops in vertical layers, often in urban environments.

Aquaponics: A system that combines hydroponics with fish farming, using fish waste to fertilize the plants.

Livestock monitoring: Using technology to track the health and well-being of farm animals.

Agroforestry: A sustainable land-use system that integrates trees with crops and/or livestock.

Soil sensors: Devices that measure soil moisture, temperature, and nutrient levels to help farmers make data-driven decisions.

Farm management software: Computer programs that help farmers manage their farms and make informed decisions.

Food traceability: The ability to track food products through the supply chain, from farm to table.

Biodegradable packaging: Packaging materials that break down naturally in the environment.

Agricultural drones: Drones specifically designed for agricultural use.

Crop rotation: Planting different crops in the same field over time improves soil health and reduces pests.

Greenhouse gases trap heat in the Earth’s atmosphere, contributing to global warming.

Sustainable agriculture: Agricultural practices that are environmentally friendly and economically viable.

Food security: Having reliable access to enough nutritious food to maintain a healthy and active life.

Vertical integration: The process of combining multiple supply chain stages under a single company’s control.

Precision irrigation: The use of technology to optimize water use in agriculture.

Artificial intelligence: The simulation of human intelligence in machines, allowing them to perform tasks that typically require human intelligence.

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs): Organisms whose genetic material has been altered in a way that does not occur naturally.

Soil health: The ability of soil to sustain plant growth and maintain ecosystem health.

Farm-to-table: The movement to promote locally sourced and seasonal foods.

Traceability: The ability to track and trace products throughout the supply chain.

Climate-smart agriculture: Agricultural practices that address the challenges of climate change.

Plant breeding: The process of developing new plant varieties with desirable traits.

Farm sensors: Devices that collect data on environmental conditions on the farm, such as temperature and humidity.

Agtech incubator: An organization that supports the development of agtech startups.

Livestock genetics: The study and manipulation of animal genetics to improve livestock performance and health.

Aquaculture: The farming of aquatic plants and animals, such as fish, shellfish, and seaweed.

Agricultural robots: Robots designed specifically for agricultural tasks.

Vertical integration: Combining multiple supply chain stages under a single company’s control.

Farm connectivity: The ability of farms to connect and share data with other stakeholders in the food system.

Food safety: The measures taken to ensure food is safe and free from harmful contaminants.

Cover crops: Crops planted to protect and improve soil health rather than for harvest.

Agricultural finance: Financial services and products designed specifically for the agriculture sector.

Smart farming: Using technology to optimize farming practices and increase efficiency.

Precision livestock farming: Using technology to optimize animal health and welfare.

Regenerative agriculture: Agricultural practices that restore and improve soil health, biodiversity, and ecosystem function.

Farm-to-market: The movement to promote direct sales of farm products to consumers rather than through intermediaries.

Food waste: The number of edibles discarded or wasted at various supply chain stages.

Agrochemicals: Chemical substances used in agriculture to control pests, weeds, and diseases and to enhance crop growth.

Agritourism: Tourism activities that involve visits to farms and agricultural areas.

Livestock feed: Feed given to livestock to support their growth and health.

Biofuels: Fuels derived from renewable biological sources, such as crops and waste materials.

Agroecology: The study of ecological processes in agricultural systems and the development of sustainable agricultural practices.

Farm data management: The collection, storage, and analysis of farm data for decision-making.

Farm equipment: Tools and machinery used for agricultural tasks.

Agricultural extension: Programs that provide farmers with education and support to improve their practices.

Agribusiness: The agriculture business, including the production, processing, and distribution of agricultural products.

Climate adaptation: The process of adapting to the impacts of climate change on agriculture.

Digital agriculture: The use of digital technologies in agriculture, such as sensors, drones, and data analytics.

Farm Credit: Financial services and products designed specifically for farmers, including loans and insurance.

Sustainable sourcing: Procuring goods and services from suppliers that meet environmental and social standards.

Irrigation: The artificial application of water to crops for agricultural purposes.

Precision feeding: Using technology to optimize animal nutrition and reduce waste.

Agroforestry systems: Combining trees, crops, or livestock in a single system to increase productivity and sustainability.

Farm labor management: The management of farm labor, including hiring, training, and scheduling.

Agricultural insurance: Insurance products designed to protect farmers from risks such as crop failure and natural disasters.

Traceability systems: Systems that enable the tracking of products through the supply chain, often using technology such as RFID tags.

Nutrient management: The management of nutrients in soil and crops to maintain soil fertility and improve crop yields.

Agricultural policy: Government policies and regulations that affect the agriculture sector.

Livestock production systems: Different systems of raising and managing livestock, such as pasture-based or intensive systems.

Biostimulants: Products that enhance plant growth and health through natural processes.

Agrochemical alternatives: Alternatives to synthetic agrochemicals, such as natural pest control methods.

Agricultural logistics: The management of the flow of agricultural products through the supply chain, including storage, transportation, and distribution.

Organic farming: A farming method that emphasizes the use of natural inputs and sustainable practices to produce food.

Farm Security: Protecting farms and agricultural assets from theft and vandalism.

Food systems: The interconnected system of actors, institutions, and processes that produce, distribute, and consume food.

Farm diversification: Diversifying farm operations to increase resilience and profitability.

Agricultural biotechnology: The use of biotechnology to improve crop yields, plant and animal breeding, and food quality.

Farm robotics: Using robots for farm tasks such as planting, harvesting, and monitoring.

Crop genetics: The study of genetic makeup and inheritance in plants and how to use it to improve crops.

Agtech investment: Investment in agtech companies and startups to develop new technologies and services.

Farm sustainability: Using practices that promote agricultural ecosystems’ long-term viability and health.

Farm-to-fork: The concept of connecting all stages of the food supply chain from production to consumption.

Soil health management: Implementing practices that improve soil health, such as crop rotation and cover cropping.

Agriculture education: Education and training for farmers and agricultural workers to improve their knowledge and skills.

Digital livestock management: Using technology to monitor and manage livestock health, feed, and behavior.

Greenhouse technology: Technology used to control the growing environment in greenhouses, such as temperature and humidity.

Farm traceability: The ability to trace the origin of food products back to their farm of origin.

Biosecurity: Measures taken to prevent the spread of diseases and pests in agricultural systems.

Farm energy management: Implementing energy-efficient farm practices, such as using renewable energy sources and efficient machinery.

Sustainable seafood: Seafood products harvested or farmed using environmentally responsible practices.

Agricultural waste management: Managing farm waste, such as manure and crop residues.

Food supply chain: The stages involved in food production, processing, and distribution.

Precision fertilization: Using technology to apply fertilizers in a precise and targeted manner.

Crop modeling: uses computer models to simulate crop growth and development under different conditions.

Agroecosystems: The combination of agriculture and ecosystems, and the interactions between them.

Farm marketing: The development of marketing strategies to sell agricultural products.

Agricultural innovation: The development of new technologies, practices, and products to improve agriculture.

Controlled environment agriculture: The practice of growing crops indoors or in other controlled environments.

Sustainable livestock farming: Livestock farming practices that prioritize animal welfare, environmental sustainability, and social responsibility.

Farm safety: Measures taken to ensure the safety of farmers and farm workers, such as safety training and protective equipment.

Agricultural entrepreneurship: The development of new agricultural businesses and startups.

With the ever-growing importance of technology in agriculture, keeping up with the latest agtech terminology is crucial for farmers, researchers, and anyone involved in the industry. By familiarizing yourself with the key terms and concepts presented in this article, you can better understand the latest agtech innovations and their potential impact on the future of food production. With continued advancements in agtech, we can look forward to a more efficient, sustainable, and productive agricultural system that can help feed our growing global population.

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