Smart agriculture is increasingly being employed in Japan, arousing expectations that producers will be able to entrust artificial intelligence with more labor-intensive tasks to alleviate severe manpower shortages.

Large-scale greenhouse farmers are leading the way, having begun to use AI-equipped robots developed by venture businesses in ways that seem, more or less, to change the future of cultivating and harvesting agricultural products.

In September, a four-wheeled AI robot slowly rolled through the lush green leaves of a plastic greenhouse at a farm in Hanyu, Saitama Prefecture, gathering only the ripest cucumbers.