Agtech business The Yield uses AI to combat challenges facing framers

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Agtech business The Yield uses AI to combat challenges facing framers
Ros Harvey, Founder and CEO, The Yield
Microsoft

Agtech business The Yield is using data and AI to improve the sustainability of farming practices and mitigate the environmental challenges facing farmers.

The business takes data from sensors and weather stations, then uses patented AI algorithms through its Digital Playbooks to improve crop predictions and make recommendations about how best to irrigate, spray, harvest and mitigate weather disasters.

According to Ross Harvey, founder and CEO of The Yield, “We’re helping to feed the world without wrecking the planet."

“This challenge is the primary issue that drives us at The Yield – and digital technology and innovation is a big part of the solution," he said.

The technology has enabled a 10 percent lift in grower revenue and a 45 percent internal rate of return in core crops for customers, as well as allowing customers to scale faster, the company claims.

The Yield is leveraging Microsoft’s partner network to rapidly scale, and push the data collected back onto customer’s systems he said.

“We are on a trajectory that will see us have AI-driven autonomous farm practices that are continuously adjusting to what the value chain needs as the season unfolds. This supports investment in the sustainable intensification of agriculture,” said Harvey.

“We’re looking for more ways to partner with Microsoft SI partners through the Microsoft partnership network.”

Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) is one customer leveraging The Yield’s technology for harvesting predictions.

“In a drought year you can decide to redistribute precious water allocations to the most valuable blocks and varieties. You also want to get the right mix in the fermenters that is going to deliver to the market the wine portfolio which gives the best financial return.”

According to Harvey, TWE is partnering with The Yield and Yamaha Motor Co, trialling spray robots in NZ and the USA.

“The aim of the trial is to combine our AI-driven recommendations to tell the robots when are the optimal conditions in which to spray. We then collect the data on what the robots have done plus what they have seen to feed back into our analytics,” he said.

“It closes the loop so that we can get to an AI calibrated system where our customers’ digital playbook dynamically adjust as the season unfolds to delivery on the market strategy.”

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