The shortage of agricultural laborers has become quite problematic for South Korean farmers. The nation as a whole is ageing due to the continuing decline in birthrates, and farmers are finding it difficult to even complete seasonal harvesting. Apart from this, the pandemic has exacerbated the shortage. The labor-intensive agricultural sector suffered as a consequence of the pandemic which has almost put a halt on international travel for migrant workers.
Some local municipalities are now looking to robots or Artificial Intelligence (AI) to replace the absent human workforce. The Chungcheongnam-do Provincial Office in South Cheongcheong Province recently introduced "a cooperative robot" for agriculture and fishery.
Cooperative robot refers to AI-based technology designed to reduce human labor in agricultural fields, with livestock and in fisheries. As the agricultural and fishery robots currently are not sophisticated enough to perform various tasks independently, the provincial government is looking into the use of robots that are operated with assistance from humans.
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