First the AWI was talking about setting up a tinder for sheep breeding, now a fitbit for irrigated crops. It makes sense, from aerial mapping paddocks, using infrared to spray weeds, ensuring machinery has GPS and Autosteer, technology can be used to improve profitability in primary production.
The investment made by Syngenta in Israeli start up Phytech announced in January 2016 will fund further development of their unique devices which monitor individual plants, “using the company’s patented phytomonitoring technology. Phytech’s PlantBeat platform combines the data they collect with data from soil moisture and microclimate sensors, and spatial imaging, to give farmers a view of water stress conditions in the field. This data is analyzed using Phytech algorithms and communicated to farmers through their phones or tablets, offering real-time feedback and decision support to help them reduce costs and improve yields, according to its website.” (Ag Funder News https://agfundernews.com/syngenta-ventures-invests-in-fitbit-for-irrigated-crops-phytech5194.html )
The aim is to enable data sharing between farmers and other relevant contributors such as researchers, consultants, suppliers, and consultants, through its cloud-based platform.
The dendrometer is “measuring water stress directly on an individual plant basis, and not an indirect measure of what’s going on with a plant like soil moisture sensing. And it’s telling farmers this on a continuous basis, on their phone, or tablet, to help them review their entire farm quickly, and decide which to visit or which to irrigate.” said Michael Lee, managing director at Syngenta Ventures.
It has not been launched in the Australian market yet, but it looks to be an impressive tool fruit producers may have access to in the near future.
In the meantime contact the Emmetts Integrated Solutions team for any of your information management needs or to find out more about our crop flight services http://www.emmetts.com.au/integrated-solutions
For more info on sheep tinder check out http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nsw/tinder-for-sheep-app-matches-rams-with-compatible-breeding-partners/news-story/2b6d0c76444c6f2c78ce0dd6d8652134