How Drones Have Revolutionized the Harvesting Process for Wineries and Distilleries
The use of drones has no boundaries. As of now, drones are mostly being used in the field of agriculture. Farmers are using these small aerial vehicles to calculate the time at which they should harvest their crops and winemakers use them in wineries and distilleries.
The Problems Faced by Farmers
All crops have a definite maturation time and it is only when that time comes that one can harvest the crop. However, when it comes to harvesting fruits, the timing becomes all the more crucial. Not all plants flower and produce fruit at the same time so knowing which plant to harvest and which one to leave at the time of harvest is of crucial importance. If harvesting is done before the fruits are ripe, your investment in terms of time and money will go to waste and you will suffer losses. On the other hand, if you are late in harvesting the ripe fruits then too you will lose out firstly because your competition will be in the market with the produce before you and secondly because of the wastage of the fruit due to over ripening and rotting. All these situations can only be avoided by knowing the exact time when you should harvest the crop.
Use of Drones to Ascertain the Right Time for Harvesting
With the passage of time, drones are becoming useful for farmers in more ways than one. Recently the drones have been used by the farmers who own vineyards for figuring out if the grapes are ripe enough to be harvested or not.
Drones are being used to give the farmers the chance to have an aerial view of their crop. The aerial images that the drone provides can be studied to figure out the vine stress and the color variation. These two factors will help in determining the right date to harvest the crop.
The drones being used for this purpose have point and shoot cameras attached to them. This camera takes images of the field in collaboration with the GPS, pointing to00 the exact location of the image. Also, the camera coverage area and the height from which the image is taken are pre-determined. All the images are then stitched to form a 3D image of the area that has been covered. These images are very useful for the farmers as they get the chance to harvest the crop at exactly the right time, allowing them to get their produce into the market before their competitors. This also reduces wastage due to over ripening and falling off of the fruits. Moreover, if the fruits are not ripe enough the farmers will know it well in advance and won’t have to take a trip to the farm, saving a lot of time.
When there is a lot of competition, it becomes very crucial to pick the grapes at the right time and UAVs help you determine that exact time for harvesting. This both saves costs for the farmers and results in higher profits.