FMC Corporation, an agricultural sciences company, today announced that it has launched drone spray services for farmers in India.
Approved by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the government body responsible for the regulation of air transport services in India, the drone service is expected to improve farm productivity while reducing the need for manual labour. FMC’s drone spray service can be accessed through the FMC India farmer app, which supports seven regional Indian languages. The service is currently available in Andhra Pradesh and will be available in the states of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra by month-end.
Mr. Ravi Annavarapu, President, FMC India said, “As technology continues to evolve in the agriculture sector, drones are expected to constitute 2 per cent of the total agricultural machinery spend in the country by the end of year 2030. In this pilot phase, FMC will leverage our deep global knowledge and expertise in drone application for the benefit of the Indian farming community. We plan to maximize our reach among Indian farmers in the selected states during the first three months, and thereafter extend the services to farmers across the country before the next Kharif season commences.”
Agricultural unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) allows more control over spray uniformity and coverage, as well as improves the precision with which crop protection products like FMC’s premium and farmer-trusted brands Coragen® insecticide and Benevia® insecticide are applied. Each spray drone is capable of treating 3-4 acres in 15-20 minutes, making the spraying job easier and faster. Using UAVs will also protect farmers from environmental risks like heat stroke.
Mr. Annavarapu added, “Our efforts have always been directed toward providing innovative solutions to farmers so they can increase yields in a sustainable manner. We will provide access to drone technology, training, and financing to promote rural entrepreneurship. Additionally, government focus on modernizing agriculture with technology, while developing requisite skills like drone operations, will ensure widespread uptake of precision agriculture. Indian agriculture is on the cusp of change, and we believe drone services will play a crucial part in transforming agricultural practices. We take pride in being one of the pioneers of this service to the Indian farming community.”