The agricultural sector is based almost entirely on
R&D, implemented by cooperation between farmers and researchers.
Research results are quickly transmitted through an extension service to
the field for trial, and problems are brought directly to the
scientists for solutions. Agricultural R&D is carried out primarily
by the Ministry of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Organization.
Most agricultural research institutes in Israel maintain close
relations with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United
Nations, ensuring a continuous exchange of information with other
Israel’s dairy cows
are, on average, the world champions in milk production, having
increased the average yield per cow from 6,300 liters in 1970 to over
10,000 liters today through scientific breeding and genetic testing
carried out by the Volcani Institute. By harvesting sperm and ova from
cattle of superior bloodlines, Israel is able to upgrade its own herd as
well as share its advances in this field with other countries.
Israeli agriculturists have pioneered trickle-drip irrigation,
agricultural biotechnology, soil solarization, and the sustained use of
industrial waste water for agriculture. These advances have been applied
to marketable products, ranging from genetically engineered seeds and
biopesticides to light-degradable plastics and computerized
Making optimal use of scarce water, harsh land, and a limited labor
force has led to revolutions in agricultural methods. The search for
water-saving techniques spurred development of computer-controlled
irrigation systems, including the drip method which directs water flow
straight to the root zone of plants, helping farmers worldwide. Research
relating to the electro-magnetic treatment of water to improve animal
health and crop yields has also produced promising results.
Israeli-designed and manufactured computers are widely used to
coordinate daily farming activities, such as guiding fertilizer
injection while monitoring relevant environmental factors, supplying
feed for livestock mixed according to tested least-cost/best-yield
proportions, and providing a temperature- and humidity-controlled
environment for poultry. In addition, a variety of innovative equipment
for tilling, sowing, planting, harvesting, collecting, sorting, and
packing has been developed, manufactured, and implemented.
Agriculture has also benefited from general scientific research and
R&D, including automated plant tissue culture, biological
insecticides, disease-resistant seeds, and biological fertilization.