DISRUPTION in terms of the machinery landscape, as opposed to unruly attendees, will be the focus of the upcoming Tractor and Machinery Association (TMA) annual conference.
TMA, executive director, Gary Northover said while talking to dealers and members, a common thread emerged which inspired the focus of the upcoming conference.
“The challenge of dealing with change to the industry, attracting and retaining employees, interest rate variations and commodity price variations are just some examples,” he said.
“The advent of robotics, of things like augmented reality, three dimension parts printing, are all starting to impact our industry.
“We want to give people to opportunity to think about how we will deal with this.”
The topic of automation and disruption is also top of mind for Australia’s peak farming policy research body.
Australian Farm Institute (AFI), executive director, Richard Heath said autonomous and robotic applications are expanding rapidly into agriculture.
“From partial autonomy of complex machinery operations to fully autonomous monitoring and application using machine learning and artificial intelligence, new uses of technology for agriculture are emerging almost on a daily basis,” he said.
Mr Heath said AFI members could now access the the latest edition of the Farm Policy Journal, which discusses whether agriculture ready for autonomy.
“The papers investigate aspects of the use of autonomous farming systems that will require different thinking and strategy and potentially new regulations, to ensure that the technology is used to its full potential,” he said.
“The papers in the journal collectively provide a positive outlook for the potential of autonomous systems in agriculture.
“An interesting common view of all the authors is that the information and knowledge derived from those systems will be one of the most significant benefits of robotics and autonomy.
“There are, however, many developing and complex issues to deal with before the widespread adoption of autonomous systems on-farm is achieved.”
Mr Heath said information on membership and gaining access to the Farm Policy Journal was available on the AFI website.
The TMA annual conference will be held in Sydney on Tuesday, July 17, with tickets available from www.tma.asn.au
Mr Northover said the conference was a whole of industry event and welcomed attendees.
“It has grown into an event encouraging networking across the industry,” he said.
“It provides a platform to share and communicate ideas which might be of interest to the broader membership.”
Among the conference speakers will be David Chuter from the Innovative Manufacturing CRC, Rabobank agriculture analyst, Wes LeFroy and Jesse Reader, agriculture sector specialist at Bosch.