5 Innovative Solutions in Agricultural Activities: Staff Picked

In the past decade, the agricultural landscape has witnessed a remarkable transformation driven by a confluence of technological advancements, shifting consumer demands, and pressing environmental concerns. Once characterised by traditional farming methods reliant on manual labour and unpredictable weather patterns, today’s agricultural sector stands at the forefront of innovation, embracing cutting-edge technologies to enhance productivity, sustainability, and resilience.

The industry has experienced a seismic shift towards precision farming techniques, leveraging data analytics, satellite imagery, and artificial intelligence to optimise crop yields and resource utilisation. Farmers are no longer solely reliant on intuition and historical practices; instead, they harness the power of big data to make informed decisions, from planting and irrigation to pest management and harvest scheduling.

Agricultural activities

Source: i Stock

Furthermore, the growing urgency to address climate change and mitigate its impact on food security has spurred a wave of innovation in sustainable agriculture. Practices such as regenerative farming, agroforestry, and vertical farming have gained traction as viable solutions to minimise carbon emissions, conserve water, and preserve soil health. This paradigm shift towards sustainability ensures the long-term viability of agricultural production and fosters a more harmonious relationship between humanity and the environment.

As we delve deeper into agricultural innovation, this article explores groundbreaking ideas and technologies developed by 5 different companies that are reshaping the way we cultivate food, from urban rooftop gardens and aquaponic systems to drone-enabled crop monitoring and gene editing. This was inspired by an interesting conversation with one of our clients:

I’m looking for startups that specialise in developing robotics that aid farmers in their day-to-day agricultural activities (weed whacking, crop planting and harvesting, looking over livestock, collecting livestock products, etc.). The technologies should be semi- or fully automated, safe and reliable.” 

By embracing innovation and ingenuity, today’s farmers are not only meeting the challenges of tomorrow but also laying the foundation for a more resilient and prosperous agricultural future.

Startup Scouting for Corporate Innovation with Novable

1. Advanced.farm

Advanced.farm specialises in providing advanced technology solutions for precision agriculture. They offer a range of services and products aimed at optimising farm management practices and improving agricultural productivity. Some of the key areas in which the company operates:

Precision farming technologies such as GPS-guided machinery, sensor-based monitoring systems, and variable rate application tools. These technologies enable farmers to optimise inputs such as fertilisers, pesticides, and water, resulting in increased efficiency and reduced environmental impact.
CVML Stack is a perfect example of this. Every piece of fruit is different. So, the team trained a machine learning model to tell you which fruit to pick, and how best to pick them. 

Moreover, the company offers farm management software platforms that integrate data from multiple sources and provide farmers with a comprehensive view of their operations. These solutions facilitate planning, record-keeping, and analysis.
Their software emulator mirrors real-world field conditions in a virtual environment, making it easier to test new features that improve performance and reliability before upgrading our equipment in the field.

The company leverages data analytics and machine learning algorithms to analyse agricultural data collected from various sources, including field sensors, satellite imagery, and weather forecasts. It also utilises remote sensing technologies such as drones and satellites to monitor crop health, detect pests and diseases, and assess field conditions. This enables early detection of issues and allows for timely interventions to prevent crop losses.

2. Agroverse

Agroverse envisions a world where farmers can afford to rest. Their goal is to help farmers produce high-quality food, sustainably and effortlessly.
They offer a different concept from the previous company, introducing agriculture robots as a service:

  • You don’t buy them. Their robots are offered as a service, therefore you don’t have to pay a large amount of money upfront or even lease them. You only pay for the work they do. 
  • You don’t operate them. Their robots are autonomous, so they don’t require operation or maintenance.
  • You get some rest and they get the job done. Enjoy more free time and let the robots do the heavy work. 

3. Earth Rover

Earth Rover is an agritech startup pioneer in the use of concentrated light for weed control. On a mission to transform and future-proof farming, they have created CLAWS, an AI and robotics-based solution to help farmers sell more and waste less of what they grow; making fresh, chemical-free produce available to, and affordable for, all. Here are some robots the team developed over the years:

Ecobotix is a fully autonomous lightweight GPS drone, powered by solar energy. It can work for a whole day with solar power. The complicated camera system of the robot aims and sprays weeds. It also has error-free arms and uses only less than 90% of herbicide. Thus, it is 30% more economical than the traditional methods. 

Energid Citrus Picking System is made for people working in the citrus fruits industry. They are an efficient and fast harvesting system that can pick fruits within 2-3 seconds. It is convenient to build these robots and is much cheaper than manual harvesting.

startup scouting for corporate innovation

4. XMachines

XMachines was founded with a vision to redirect global agriculture towards sustainability by focusing on the right technologies. Innovation led the company to develop and use AI-based robotics. 

They designed a multi-purpose agricultural robot for sapling plantation, weed control, and spraying. A versatile tool for vegetables, floriculture, crops, and orchards, suitable for both outdoor farms and greenhouses.

5. Verdant Robotics

Verdant Robotics’s bullseye targeting technology enables transformative applications across all your crops and fields. It uses AI to identify individual crops and weeds in your field with 99% accuracy, which can help in the removal or nutrient-precise application.

Millimetre-level precision means that you can use the smart sprayer in both conventional and high-density crops, using 96% less input. Whether you are unlocking new value with fertility chemicals or improving efficiency by getting in the field when you need to, regardless of how big the weeds are or how wet the ground is, this solution will help you.

What is the current situation?

Many tractors flooded the streets in the past few months. While agricultural issues were not on the immediate agenda of EU leaders nearby, disregarding these grievances could prove risky for politicians.

Delving into the root causes of the ongoing farmer protests across Europe reveals a multifaceted landscape. While some concerns, like Berlin’s proposal to phase out tax breaks on agricultural diesel or the Netherlands’ mandate to curb nitrogen emissions, are specific to individual countries, many are shared across the continent.

Farmers cite plummeting sale prices, escalating expenses, burdensome regulations, aggressive retail practices, mounting debt, the specter of climate change, and the influx of inexpensive foreign imports. All these challenges persist within an EU agricultural framework that champions the mantra of “bigger is better.”

This situation is not sustainable for the hard workers, and actions need to be takes!

What is your opinion on the topic? Did you know about these AI-robots’ existence? Share your thoughts with us on LinkedIn!

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