The usage of aerial imagery on crops isn’t soaring

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Digitization can help improve nearly every sector of the ag industry, and while farm technology has taken off in the last decade, the amount of producers using drones to survey their crops has yet to soar.

The most recent numbers released by USDA show in 2016, 7 percent of corn acres used aerial imagery. The number was nearly 10 percent for soybeans in 2018.

Winter wheat was at 3.5 percent in 2017, with a little less than 3 percent of cotton acres taking advantage of that technology in 2019. For related technologies, more than 40 percent of farmers took to the skies for yield maps, and about 21 percent used it to create soil maps in 2016.