In a groundbreaking announcement during the State of The Nation Address, Bhutan’s Prime Minister unveiled a comprehensive Agri-Tech Strategy, signaling a paradigm shift in the nation’s agricultural landscape. Aligned with Bhutan’s ambitious long-term vision, which aspires to elevate the nation to a high-income status with a GDP of USD 10 billion by 2034, the strategy is set to harness cutting-edge technology to revolutionize agriculture, elevate food security, and uplift the lives of farmers.
At the heart of this ambitious initiative is the integration of state-of-the-art technology into farming practices, forming the cornerstone of Bhutan’s agricultural growth plan. The strategy envisions the implementation and scaling up of vertical farms that employ advanced hydroponic and aeroponic techniques, ensuring the year-round production of high-quality crops. Additionally, automated systems designed to maximize water and energy efficiency will be introduced, emphasizing sustainability and productivity.
To empower farmers, Internet of Things (IoT)-driven solutions will provide real-time data on soil and animal health, temperature, moisture, and pest prevalence. The deployment of drones equipped with advanced sensors will revolutionize crop yield assessment and enable early detection of weed and disease issues. Bhutan’s farming community will have access to a new agri-food digital platform offering services such as crop advisory, weather warnings, and pest outbreak alerts.
Encouraging private sector participation, the government is inviting enterprises to establish machinery and equipment rental services. The Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MoAL) will actively support interested entities in sourcing and importing modern farm machinery, equipment, tools, and spare parts, fostering the adoption of contemporary agricultural practices.
The Agri-Tech strategy, with a dual focus on meeting the growing demand for food and enhancing food security, supports the development of high-value agriculture and livestock commodities. Special attention will be given to establishing large-scale commodity-based organic agriculture and livestock production, emphasizing market expansion and certification.
This groundbreaking initiative represents a crucial step towards realizing Bhutan’s agricultural ambitions. By leveraging technology, the nation aims to bolster agricultural output, uplift farmers’ livelihoods, and make a significant contribution to economic development. The Prime Minister emphasized that with a commitment to sustainable practices and increased productivity, Bhutan’s agricultural sector is poised for a transformative journey, setting the stage for a flourishing and resilient future.