Agriculture 4.0 - A state of the art review focused on electric mobility

Michéle Weisbach, Heiko Fechtner, Alexander Popp, Utz Späth, Benedikt Schmülling


In its endeavor to conserve resources and create a more environmental-friendly agriculture, the 4th agricultural revolution now underway needs innovative methods and new technologies to achieve a more sustainable farming industry. In addition to the different methods and applications, subsumed under the term agriculture 4.0, this article focuses on the areas in which the discipline of electric mobility is becoming more and more important. Therefore, the two superordinate categories “family” and “industrial” farming were considered separately to compare technical approaches and solution which are currently in use or conceivable in the future.


Agriculture 4.0; Electric mobility; Smart farming; Family farming; Industrial farming; Sustainability

Texto completo:



AHMED, J. et al., 2020. Agriculture and climate change: Reducing emissions through improved farming practices, McKinsey&Company.

ALSHARIF, W.; SAAD, M. M.; HIRT, H., 2020. Desert Microbes for Boosting Sustainable Agriculture in Extreme Environments.

ANIL, H., NIKHIL, K. S., CHAITRA, V.; GURU SHARAN, B. S. 2015. Revolutionizing Farming Using Swarm Robotics. Kuala Lumpur.

ANZALONE, A., KOBLAN, L.; LIU, D. 2020. Genome editing with CRISPR–Cas nucleases, base editors, transposases and prime editors.

AVGOUSTAKI, D. D.; XYDIS, G. 2020. Indoor Vertical Farming in the Urban Nexus Context: Business Growth and Resource Savings.

BERCHIN, I. I. et al., 2019. The contributions of public policies for strengthening family farming and increasing food security: The case of Brazil. Land Use Policy, Issue 82, p. 573-584.

BITKOM,V. 2020. Digitalisierung in der Landwirtschaft.

BRYANT, C.; BARNETT, J. 2018. Consumer acceptance of cultured meat: A systematic review.

CABAN, J. et al., 2018. Analysis of the market of electric tractors in agricultural production. MATEC Web of Conferences.

DE CLERCQ, M., vats, A.; BIEL, A. 2018. Agriculture 4.0: The Future of Farming Technology.

OLIVEIRA, A. L. et al., 2020. Revisiting the concept of “fiscal modules”: implications for restoration and conservation programs in Brazil. Land Use Policy.

Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations, 2019. World Population Prospects 2019, New York, USA: United Nations.

ERIKSEN, M., LEBRETON, L. C. M.; CARSON, H. S., 2014. Plastic Pollution in the World’s Oceans.

Euopean Commission, 2019. The European Green Deal, Brussels, Belgium: European Union.

European Commission, 2018. Digital Transformation Monitor - Drones in agriculture.

European Parliamentary Research Service, 2020. EU agricultural policy and climate change, Euopean Union.

Eurostat, 2019. Agriculture statistics - family farming in the EU. [Online] Available at: _family_farming_in_the_EU#Structural_profile_of_farms_-_analysis_for_the_EU [Accessed 28 October 2020].

Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, 2018. ICT for Electric Mobility III, Berlin, Germany.

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 2014. International Year of Family Farming 2014 - Master Plan. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 27 October 2020].

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 2014. The State of Food and Agriculture 2014: Innovation in family farming. Rome.

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 2017. Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in Agriculture, A Report to the G20 Agricultural Deputies.

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 2018. FAO’s Work on Family Farming: Preparing for the Decade of Family Farming (2019-2018) to achieve the SDGs.

GHOBADPOUR, A. et al., 2019. State of the art of autonomous agricultural off-road vehicles driven by renewable energy systems. Energy Procedia.

GRAUEB, B. E. et al., 2016. The State of Family Farms in the World. World Development.

HLPE, 2013. Investing in smallholder agriculture for food security. A report by the High Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition of the Committee on World Food Security, Rome.

International Fund for Agricultural Development, 2014. The International Year of Family Farming: IFAD’s Commitment and Call for Action, Rome, Italy.

ISLAM, M. S.; DEY, G. K., 2019. Precision Agriculture: Renewable Energy Based Smart Crop Field Monitoring and Management System Using WSN via IoT.

JANTKE, K. et al., 2020. Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Knowledge and Positions of German Farmers. MDPI Land.

JARIYASAKOOLROJ, P.; LEELAPHIWAT, P.; HARNKARNSUJARIT, N. 2018. Advances in research and development of bioplastic for food packaging.

JENSEN, M. H. 1997. Hydroponics.

Joint Research Centre, 2018. Climate impacts in Europe: Final report of the JRC PESETA III project, Euopean Union.

LIU, Y.; MA, X.; SHU, L.; HANCKE, G. P. 2020. From Industry 4.0 to Agriculture 4.0: - Current Status, Enabling Technologies, and Research Challenges.

MÁRQUEZ, S.; RAMOS, Á. 2012. Differential Policies for Family Farming in MERCOSUR, Contribution of Political Dialogue in the Design of Public Policies and Institutionalization. [Online] Available at:

[Accessed 27 October 2020].

MELO, R. R.; ANTUNES, F. L. M.; DAHER, S.; VOGT, H. H.; ALBIERO, D.; TOFOLI, F. L. 2019. Conception of an electric propulsion system for a 9 kW electric tractor suitable for family farming. IET Electric Power Applications, Monaco.

MONTELEONE, S.; ALVES, E. M. 2019. Analysis of the variables that affect the intention to adopt Precision Agriculture for smart water management in Agriculture 4.0 context.

MOUSAZADEH, H. et al., 2011. Life-cycle assessment of a Solar Assist Plug-in Hybrid electric Tractor (SAPHT) in comparison with a conventional tractor. Energy Conversion and Management.

OTCU, G. B., RAMUNDO, L.; TERZI, S. 2019. State of the Art of Sustainability in 3D Food Printing.

POORE, J.; NEMECEK, T. 2018. Reducing food’s environmental impacts through producers and consumers.

QUALMAN, D. 2019. Tackling the Farm Crisis and the Climate Crisis: A Transformative Strategy for Canadian Farms and Food Systems, discussion document, Saskatoon, Canada: National Farmers Union.

RIEDNER, L. et al., 2019. E‑mobility in agriculture: differences in perception between experienced and non‑experienced electric vehicle users. Clean Technologies and Environmental Policy.

Robert Bosch GmbH, 2020. Nevonex. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 29 October 2020].

ROSIN, C., 2013. Journal of Rural Studies.

SAIZ-RUBIO, V.; ROVIRA-MÁS, F. 2020. From Smart Farming towards Agriculture 5.0: A Review on Crop Data Management. MDPI Agronomy.

SHETE, M.; RUTTEN, M. 2015. Impacts of large-scale farming on local communities’ food security and income levels - Empirical evidence from Oromia Region, Ethiopia. Land Use Policy.

SIMA, M.; GUERRA, J. B. S. O. A. 2019. The contributions of public policies for strengthening family farming and increasing food security: The case of Brazil. Land Use Policy.

STROUD, T. et al., 2018. Farm Torque: electric orchard tractors, South Africa: World Wide Fund for Nature.

TARASINSKI, N.; KEGEL, V.; DAUBERMANN, J., 2018. GridCON - Development and Testing of a Cable-fed, Full Electric and Autonomous Agricultural Machine. Leinfelden-Echterdingen, VDI Verlag GmbH.

The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development/The World Bank, 2003. Reaching The Rural Poor, A Renewed Strategy For Rural Development.

The World Bank, 2020. Agriculture, forestry, and fishing, value added (% of GDP). [Online]

Available at: [Accessed 28 October 2020].

TIPA Corp Ltd., 2020. Overview. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 29 October 2020].

TRONCON, D.; ALBERTI, L. 2020. Case of Study of the Electrification of a Tractor: Electric Motor Performance Requirements and Design. MDPI Energies.

United Nations Organization, 2015. Transforming Our World: The 2030 Agenda For Sustainable Development.

United Nations, 2019. World Population Prospects 2019 - Methodology of the United Nations population estimates and projections.

United States Department of Agriculture, 2019. Most farms are small, but most production is on large farms. [Online]

Available at: [Accessed 28 October 2020].

VOGT, H. H., ALBIERO, D.; SCHMÜLLING, B. 2018. Electric tractor propelled by renewable energy for small-scale family farming.

WREFORD, A.; IGNACIUK, A.; GRUÈRE, G., 2017. Overcoming barriers to the adoption of climate-friendly practices in agriculture. OECD Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Papers.

Revista Ciência Agronômica ISSN 1806-6690 (online) 0045-6888 (impresso), Site:, e-mail: - Fone: (85) 3366.9702 - Expediente: 2ª a 6ª feira - de 7 às 17h.