Farmers don’t need technology to tell them what already happened. The need for better tools is in predicting what will happen that they can actually influence with actions today. The Yield CEO Ros Harvey says AI and robotics can help.
Harvey… “If you had perfect data and perfect information, you would get perfect predictions. But of course we don't have perfect information and everybody knows that growers are super, super busy. So, you know, they don't have time to fill in diaries, let alone apps saying I did this and I did that. And so really the way this connection between AI and robotics is going to come around is two things. One is in our collaboration with Yamaha, that's running a robotic spray service in the Napa valley. They're offering a spray service using robots, both drones in the air and on the ground. And effectively what we're doing in this trial is we're using the spray rules and models from our digital playbooks to tell the robots what to spray and when. And we know using micro climate that we can get a really significant uplift in accuracy, which makes it more cost effective and more effective for the robotic spray. But at the same time, we're collecting the data from the robots to put back into our algorithms.”
Harvey said passive data collection on the farm through automation is an important next step towards digital agriculture.