Old Macdonald had a phone ...

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The Independent Online
FARMERS HAVE ignored more obvious innovations such as the latest advances in crop technology or pest control to vote the mobile phone the top technological tool down on the farm, according to a survey published yesterday.

The poll, conducted by the National Farmers' Union (NFU), found that computers followed mobiles as farmers' favourite innovations of the 20th century.

Farmers told NFU researchers that these inventions provide an instant link to the outside world, as well as helping them to run their businesses. Also popular was hydraulic equipment such as lifting gear on tractors, which has taken much of the physical strain out of farm work, while straw- baling machines, which create round rather than square bales, also featured because they make bales easier to move around and store.

Tony Pexton, NFU deputy president, said: "The image of a farmer in a field of sheep brandishing a mobile phone somehow just doesn't fit people's image of farming. But our poll has shown that the mobile revolution has had as much impact down on the farm as on people living and working in towns and cities."