Chapter 14 Big Data in Agriculture and Nutrition, written by Ruthie Musker, Head of Partnerhips at GODAN, explores the issues and opportunities surrounding the use of big data in improving agricultural outcomes. The food system community sees a huge potential for big data in agriculture to lift farmers out of poverty, and ensure that parents can feed their children nutritious, diverse foods. In the USA, for example, venture capitalists spent 3 billion USD on ‘agtech’ (digital technology in agriculture) in 2016, with 46% of investors focusing on big data and analytics. Large data initiatives such as the CGIAR’s Big Data in Agriculture Platform have made thousands of datasets and publications available. In order to establish a global data ecosystem that yields powerful insights and recommendations on the ways in which agriculture can improve nutrition, the community must ensure that the benefits of big data are for the betterment of all and not only for the few.
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