Towards Sustainable Agriculture: Immersive Technologies as Part of Farming Education
The UuviTila project, initiated at Häme University of Applied Sciences, combines the latest research knowledge and XR technologies (virtual reality, augmented reality, mixed reality) to revolutionize farming education. The goal is to deepen farmers’ understanding of carbon sequestration, promote biodiversity, and meet growing environmental requirements.
With the environmental goals set for the food industry, there is an increased need for farms to enhance their expertise in innovative farming practices. Efficient training methods are required to promote low-carbon food production and increase biodiversity, addressing crucial environmental demands. For instance, Valio has already committed to low-carbon milk production. However, this transition takes time, and the latest information on sustainable, low-carbon, and innovative farming methods needs to be provided to food producers in increasingly diverse formats.
The innovative learning solutions of the UuviTila project are based on XR technologies, offering farmers the opportunity to learn practically in virtual environments. This addresses challenges faced by traditional teaching methods, as they may not always effectively convey practical procedures. Additionally, digital learning environments enable farmers to learn independently of time and place, fitting well into the occasionally hectic yearly rhythm of farmers.
The project aims to enhance farmers’ understanding of carbon sequestration, support climate measures in the land-use sector, and increase capabilities in utilizing data. Customized immersive learning solutions respond to the needs of the modern workforce, creating new opportunities in a virtual learning environment.
The research conducted in the UuviTila project is a fascinating step forward in the development of farming learning environments. AR/XR technologies enable a new way of presenting phenomena occurring in the soil. This allows us to provide researched information on innovative farming to food producers. Virtual environments enhance learning, making the presentation of phenomena more engaging and practical.-Timo Hynninen, Project Manager
The project is implemented by HAMK, in collaboration with partners Valio, Baltic Sea Action Group, and AgriHub. The project is funded by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry’s Catch the Carbon Research and Innovation Programme.
UuviTila – Expanding Knowledge of Innovative Farming is part of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry’s Catch the Carbon Research and Innovation Programme, initiated in spring 2020 in the land-use sector. The measures aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture and land use, and strengthen carbon sinks and storages.
For more information:
Principal Research Scientist, tenure track