Selasa 31 Oct 2023 08:58 WIB

Indonesian Young Farmer on the Decline

This decrease in agricultural human resource threaten food safety.

Rep: Wilda Fizriyani / Red: Fitriyan Zamzami
Grape grower, Sigit performs grape seedling treatment at the grape seedling cultivation house, Jipangan, Sragen, Central Java, Wednesday (13/9/2023).
Foto: Republika/Wihdan Hidayat
Grape grower, Sigit performs grape seedling treatment at the grape seedling cultivation house, Jipangan, Sragen, Central Java, Wednesday (13/9/2023).

REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, MALANG -- Latest data suggest that young people in Indoensia are increasingly reluctant to engage in agriculture. The fields is perceived less promising in this digital age.

Based on data from Ministri of Agriculture in 2020, farmers aged 20 to 39 are only 2.7 million out of a total of 33.4 million farmers. A total of 61 percent of farmers in Indonesia are over the age of 45. “Many young people think that the profession of farmer is not cool,” said Nurdiah Husnah, head of the Standard Testing Hall of Instruments for Citrus and Fruit Crops (BSIP Jestro), while lecturing in University of Muhammadiyah Malang (UMM), Monday (30/10/2023).

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According to her, there are several issues that are key to the staple so that young people are reluctant to plunge into the world of agriculture. For example, there is the transfer of land functions, little agricultural capital, to less precise cultivation techniques.

This decrease in agricultural human resouce is said not proportional to people's demand for food materials. Therefore, it is necessary to collaborate between technology and humans in order to create an agriculture that is in tune with the 5.0 era.

The application of technology in agriculture aims to combine artificial intelligence (AI) with human intelligence to advance Indonesian agriculture. This is because agriculture today still applies conventional agriculture which requires considerable energy and costs. Therefore, there is a need for cooperation between the government, the private sector, academia, and the public to develop agriculture in the 5.0 era.

Meanwhile, Director of PT Sumber Alam Unggul, Arif Wibowo explained that agricultural mechanization is a form of collaboration between AI and humans to take advantage of little land use but can maximize agricultural yields. He exemplified the use of agriculture with specially designed aeroponic systems with plant watering automation systems. “Also the use of drones as fertilizer sprayers and agricultural harvesting machines,” Arif said in apress message.

On the same occasion, Director of PT Syngenta Seed Indonesia, Suwarno said that the application of technology in agriculture is not limited only to the manufacture of advanced machines. More than that, its development can range from the manufacture of fertilizers, seeding technologies to create superior seeds, to the manufacture of organic pesticides to fight pests. Students should indeed be prepared to be pioneers in creating agricultural ecosystems that are compliant with industry 5.0.

UMM Rector Professor Fauzan said that it is currently preparing its students to be able to plunge directly into the industrial world. Students are equipped with technical expertise so that when entering the industrial world, they are not confused about what to do. All of them are packaged in the form of flagship classes or CoE that have been in place since 2018.

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