Agriculture has a big data problem. As the sector needs to improve productivity and sustainability, data-driven technologies are crucial to address these challenges.
“The problem is two-pronged,” said Dr David Flanders, CEO of Agrimetrics. “Agri-businesses are – often justifiably – reluctant to share their data. Meanwhile, organisations lack the information they need to build new solutions. This has prevented meaningful innovation. Data-driven manufacturers have, for example, increased production by 50 per cent and cut waste by 20 per cent.”
Agrimetrics has close links with AHDB, DEFRA and the NFU and boasts Microsoft as a strategic partner. Airbus, the aerospace giant, has made satellite-derived field attributes available through the Data Marketplace. These attributes can be used to calculate irrigation requirements and develop methods for countering lodging. The Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH), Soil Grids, the Met Office, Natural England, the Environment Agency and others join Airbus.
Global agri-tech companies are using data to manage production
BASF, global largest chemical manufacturer, has used the data to develop a water stewardship tool that gives field-specific guidance on when to spray. The ‘wHen2gO’ aims to simplify a complex regulatory area and is an example of how data-driven tools can improve sustainability and farm profitability.
Barfoots, the UK food and farming company, has used the data to create a predictive harvest model to reduce waste and inefficiencies across their international supply chains.
“Robotics, artificial intelligence, carbon farming, predictive models, farm-to-fork traceability and natural capital accounting are often-highlighted when discussing the future of agriculture,” concluded Dr Matthew Smith, chief product officer at Agrimetrics.
“However, they fundamentally depend on the ability to easily exchange data. This requires new linked-data supply-chains that seamlessly connect data-producers and data-consumers throughout the food and farming system.”
Addressing these, the Agri-food Data Marketplace is set to help data-owners, accelerating innovation.
How the Agri-Food Data Marketplace works