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Digital mapping technology to help farmers in Sussex

SUSSEX, UK – A Fredericton researcher wants to use digital mapping technology to help farmers in Sussex and around the world.

“The goal is to help farmers to better manage their land,” said You Jiao, a soil researcher with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.

Jiao uses data collected by geographic information technology and remote sensing to create digital maps of New Brunswick. The maps help identify different soil types and land drainage characteristics.

Robert English, president of the Agriculture Alliance of New Brunswick, says the soil and land information gained through digital mapping could be a useful tool for farmers.

“If we can get an agricultural policy in which farming can start to be profitable again, where farmers can start to have a return on investment, we’re going to need more land or else be able to take marginal land and put it into different crops,” said English.

Another possible advantage is that the information could help farmers better identify poor soil and use less fertilizer.

Over the next five years Jiao hopes to map all of New Brunswick. The Sussex mapping project is scheduled to begin in the fall.