Carlos Cob
Yerhard Lalangui
Raquel Lazcano
Agronomy Journal

As the global population is expected to reach 10 billion by 2050, the agricultural sector faces the challenge of achieving an increase of 60% in food production without using much more land. This paper explores the potential of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to bridge this “land gap” and mitigate the environmental implications of agricultural land use. Typically, the problem with using AI in such agricultural sectors is the need for more specific infrastructure to enable developers to design AI and ML engineers to deploy these AIs. It is, therefore, essential to develop dedicated infrastructures to apply AI models that optimize resource extraction in the agricultural sector. This article presents an infrastructure for the execution and development of AI-based models using open-source technology, and this infrastructure has been optimized and tuned for agricultural environments. By embracing the MLOps culture, the automation of AI model development processes is promoted, ensuring efficient workflows, fostering collaboration among multidisciplinary teams, and promoting the rapid deployment of AI-driven solutions adaptable to changing field conditions. The proposed architecture integrates state-of-the-art tools to cover the entire AI model lifecycle, enabling efficient workflows for data scientists and ML engineers. Considering the nature of the agricultural field, it also supports diverse IoT protocols, ensuring communication between sensors and AI models and running multiple AI models simultaneously, optimizing hardware resource utilization. Surveys specifically designed and conducted for this paper with professionals related to AI show promising results. These findings demonstrate that the proposed architecture helps close the gap between data scientists and ML engineers, easing the collaboration between them and simplifying their work through the whole AI model lifecycle.

This article belongs to the Special Issue Data-Driven Agriculture: Remote Sensing and Machine Learning for Sustainable Farming Practices).