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Automation applications will be orientated towards and assist in the attainment of environmentally friendly and sustainable systems of agricultural and food production. However, the difficulties in matching environmental concerns and sustainability with an ever-increasing world population cannot be underestimated especially in the developing countries. Thus, there may be a tension between maximizing food production on the one hand and implementing sustainable development and environmental protection systems (e.g. erosion control) especially, in poorer regions, where the demand for increased food production follows logically from an increasing population. The training of operatives involves a partnership between equipment users, equipment suppliers, maintenance and repair services, extension services (where available), research and educational institutions, and the communications media (farming press, radio, TV, Internet). Farm relief services are an integral part of a backup system where illness or other difficulties prevent a farmer from operating equipment effectively.

But in Japan hand-carried power sprayers for rice and other crops became popular only with the development of a much wider range of pesticides after World War II. Such power sprayers are now used throughout Asia, often hired on a contract basis. The growth of hand and power sprayers is driven by the availability and use of pesticides and is widespread even at very low wages.Nevertheless, case studies, actual observation, and discussions with engineers and machinery manufacturers reveal very similar trends. For example, the emergence of a diversified machinery industry from small shops is well known for the Indian Punjab. The Thai power tiller industry has been well documented by Wattanutchariya (1981). Innovations in the Philippines have been described by Mikkelsen and Langam (1981).

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