Sign up for our daily Newsletter and stay up to date with all the latest news!

Subscribe I am already a subscriber

You are using software which is blocking our advertisements (adblocker).

As we provide the news for free, we are relying on revenues from our banners. So please disable your adblocker and reload the page to continue using this site.

Click here for a guide on disabling your adblocker.

Sign up for our daily Newsletter and stay up to date with all the latest news!

Subscribe I am already a subscriber

Serbia: Opportunities in precision agriculture

Last week, PIK Becej, a company focusing on irrigation, which operates within the MK Group, organized an open field day. The organizers presented a precision irrigation project that was implemented in cooperation with the Dutch company Dacom. The project was also financially supported by the Dutch Government.

During the event the company showcased the practical implementation of precision irrigation management and control technologies in field, with the aim of improving the efficiency and saving water. To that end soil sensors were placed on the irrigated plots. These combine information received from weather stations and weather forecast, in order to better calculate the amount of water needed for irrigation. The software provides information on the depth at which water is available for crops and if additional irrigation is needed.

Water is one of the most important natural resources. According to data from the 2023 Agricultural Census done by Statistical Office of Serbia, only 8.3% of the agricultural land in use is irrigated in Serbia, with 27.5% of farms engaged in irrigation. Regarding the structure of irrigated areas by land category, arable farming and horticulture lead with 72%, followed by orchards at 23% and vineyards at 2.0%. Among the irrigation methods, surface irrigation is the most commonly used at 42%, followed closely by drip irrigation at 41%, while sprinkling accounts for 17%.

Unlocking the potential of digitalization for the agricultural sector requires concerted action by all stakeholders involved. At the presentation of precision irrigation technology in PIK Becej all key players were present from governments officials to knowledge institutions, technology providers and the farming community. It was common conclusion that a joint action and cooperation is needed to preserve natural resources and to achieve sustainable production in agriculture.

Hail halves raspberry yield
Due to the weather conditions, the raspberry yield has so far been halved compared to last year and a maximum of 25 to 30 thousand tons can be expected if there is no more hail until the harvest, said the president of the Association of Raspberry Producers, Dobrivoje Radovic. He stated for the Beta news agency that, in the preceding days, the hail and the floods had damaged around 15% of the yield and that, due to the lower price, the lack of agrotechnical measures and the April hail, the yield in certain parcels would be lower by 40-70%. He pointed out that, in the previous year, around 55 thousand tons of raspberries had been produced and that, together with the 2022 stock, nearly the entire quantity of around 65 thousand tons had been exported, whereas a smaller quantity of processed products remained. Radovic said that the minimum input purchase price for the 2024 yield would be €3.4 per kilogram.


Publication date: