Growing, buying and trading goods have been standard practices since the origin of economy. Farmers grow crops and commodities to sell or trade, and consumers offer money or goods in exchange for other goods. This process has been the tried-and-true foundation of the modern free enterprise system.
In today’s society, however, money is not the only capital that plays a role in agribusiness. In the last decade or so, the tides have changed, and there is one thing that may be more valuable than the dollar – data.
Information is a gateway to the digital business place, and data is the currency. This growing interest in data collection and analysis is correlated with three major changes in the economic landscape: increased connectivity, increased transparency and increased technology.
From social media to the Internet of Things, there are no longer limits to how far a business can reach. With the growth in connectivity, more data is available for people to collect and assess in order to build professional relationships worldwide. Now that connectivity has reached a global scale, people are able to make more informed and precise decisions about their business, rendering that data as invaluable.
Buyers and manufacturers aren’t just aiming for the best bang for their buck anymore; they’re also aiming for the option that will provide the most information about their products. With innovative solutions available, agribusiness professionals want to know where the crops and commodities they’re buying came from, as well as how they are handled throughout the supply chain. If farmers and software companies can offer their customers data in addition to their services, the dollar is often outweighed and they’re price points start to look a lot more worthwhile.
The increase in connectivity and transparency is only made possible through the incredible advancements in technology. Farmers can now access and collect data throughout every step in the production process, starting with farm management software, and expanding all the way to online trading tools and blockchain-based business networks. Technology functions as the engine behind a new era of agribusiness, and now that innovative solutions are matched with corresponding digital tools, data has stretched its limitations and now drives the dollar in agriculture and other industries alike.