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Rules for robots

Rules for robots

An online forum with stakeholders ranging from Defra to the Health and Safety Executive has made further progress towards developing a code of practice for the operation of autonomous farm machinery after an industry working group set out the principles at a meeting at the Agri-Epi Centre in 2019.


“There is certainly an appetite to make it happen,” says Mr Franklin.


“Harper Adams’ chair of agri-tech economics, Prof James Lowenberg-DeBoer, is working with the British Standards Institute to arrange workshops and meetings to help develop the guidelines.


Prof Lowenberg-DeBoer says: “There are already relevant standards in place for testing and manufacturing agricultural robots, but not for operating them commercially.


“A working group in Australia has developed a code of practice, but in the UK we have different issues to consider, one of which is public access to farmland.”

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