Projects Funded for Olena Sambucci


Economics of Precision Agriculture in California Specialty Crops

  • Leslie (Bees) Butler
  • Olena Sambucci


Specific Objectives of the Project
Examine the benefits from precision agriculture technology and mechanisms of adoption in heterogeneous production environments. Studies of precision agriculture technology have traditionally been done in applications to field crops, and comparatively little research has been done on specialty crops, especially perennial crops. The objective of this study is to examine and document the emerging applications of precision agriculture technology to high-value specialty crops in California, and to demonstrate the potential benefits from adoption.

Project Report/Summary of Results
Over the winter quarter we employed a GSR to compile a literature review of the existing studies on the benefits of precision agriculture technology for agronomic and horticultural crops. We found that precision agriculture technologies available to agricultural producers are abundant, but studies on the economic benefits of these technologies and the rates of adoption are scarce. We decided that the best course of action for completing this project would be to supplement the review of the literature with a review of the current best practices related to the production of major horticultural crops, and, possibly, interviews with representatives of the industry to gauge the trends of adoption of major new technologies. We plan to complete this work over the summer, as it requires a more targeted approach and a slower pace.