ISPA Account

Summary of the 14th European Conference on Precision Agriculture

The 14th European Conference on Precision Agriculture took place in Bologna 2-6 July 2023.
The wave of Precision Agriculture has reached Italy for the first time, particularly on the shores of the University of Bologna. In partnership with the International Society of Precision Agriculture (ISPA), the Department of Agri-food Sciences and Technologies (DISTAL) of the University of Bologna organized the 14th European Conference on Precision Agriculture - ECPA Bologna 2023. The conference, which took place from July 2nd to 6th, saw the participation of over 400 attendees, including scientists and industry representatives.
Over the course of the four days, alongside the 250 oral and poster presentations, the potential of emerging technological solutions emerged, aiming to transform agriculture by adopting autonomous vehicles (Hand Free Agriculture and Human Robot Collaboration), optimizing resources (water and fertilizers), and progressively reducing agrochemicals (Pesticide-free Agriculture) through variable-rate application and the use of physical means. Among the enabling technologies discussed were Artificial Intelligence (AI) for weed recognition, robot guidance and automated harvesting, the Internet of Things (IoT), and Machine Learning for studies on the characterization and monitoring of agricultural surfaces and crops using proximal and remote sensors.
Three Plenary Sessions, a technical field tour at the university experimental farm, two side events organized by Confagricoltura and Crea, two society meetings, and a Gala Dinner characterized and contributed to the excitement of the four-day event on Precision Agriculture in Bologna. The topics addressed demonstrated a broad and integrated involvement of expertise and interests ranging from engineering to ecosystem physics, computer science to economics and marketing, and even legislative aspects.
The organizers of UNIBO along with Avenue Media, who managed the event, expressed their satisfaction with the international level of the conference. Participating and contributing to the debate were institutions such as Rector and a representative of the newly established National Center for the Development of New Technologies in Agriculture (Agritech).