How Communication Affects the Adoption of Digital Technologies in Soybean Production: A Survey in Brazil

Joana Colussi, Eric L. Morgan, Gary D. Schnitkey, Antônio D. Padula

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Technology adoption has contributed to developing efficient food production throughout the history of modern agriculture. In the last decades, several technologies have positively affected yields globally, and, more recently, digital solutions are leading the way. This article presents the results of a survey carried out with 461 Brazilian soybean farmers about the use of technologies and the level of influence of mass media, social media, and interpersonal meetings on the decision to adopt new technologies. We surveyed farmers in Brazil’s top five soybean-producing states, which represent 75% of production in the world’s largest soybean producer. Spearman’s rank correlations showed an association between communication and the use of precision and digital technologies. LinkedIn had the highest positive correlation between precision and digital tools. Conferences, forums, and seminars had the highest positive correlation with the perceived benefits of using technologies on-farm. The results suggest that in-person activities still have relevance, but social media platforms, such as WhatsApp, have grown increasingly important to farmers. In addition, the correlations indicate that adopters of established technologies tend to prioritize in-person connections as a reference for their decision making. The results reinforce that superior knowledge and information are decisive in the process of adopting technologies in agriculture.
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAgriculture (Switzerland)
Volume12
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 26 2022

Keywords

  • Brazilian soybean farmers
  • mass media
  • social media
  • interpersonal meetings
  • technology adoption

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