Regulation of autonomous farm machinery remains grey

A farm management specialist says state policies have the potential to drive the adoption of autonomous farm machinery.

Jordan Shockley with the University of Kentucky tells Brownfield federal policy for autonomous equipment in agriculture doesn’t really exist.

“California does have a policy in place that states that autonomous machinery can only operate in a certain speed, that’s up to two miles per hour, and has to have human supervision,” he says.

Shockley’s concerned California’s laws could set precedent and limit what kind of technology becomes commercially available.

“We need to be more proactive when we think about this and what type of policies will benefit and foster the commercialization rather than suppress it,” he says.

Brownfield interviewed Shockley during this week’s Ohio Conservation Tillage and Technology Conference in Ada where he spoke on taking precision technology beyond profitability.

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