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Specialty crop growers’ perspectives on adopting new technologies Published In HortTechnology, 24 (1):81-87, 2014, by S. Caplan, B. Tilt, G. Hoheisel, T.A. Baugher

Increasing labor costs and changes in labor forces have prompted an increased demand for automation in specialty crop production. Implementation of technological innovations in the agricultural sector tends to be slow, thus this study investigated motivations and perceptions of technology. Using qualitative interviewing and analysis, this study used a diffusion of innovations framework to gain insight into what channels of communications impacted planned adoption rates and what aspects of technology influence the decision-making process. Interview participants emphasized the inevitability of implementing new technologies while considering the capital investment of more complex technology, changes in labor management to integrate technology, applicability of technology to current practices, and trust in technology designers.

Washington State University