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Making veg production digital will improve returns

News - 03.05.22

New programs and systems will extend the precision of field vegetable production and give users a better insight to crop development, writes Don Pendergrast, Agrii technical manager (non-combinable crops)

Agrii already has a digital platform for precision farming that it can be proud of, but that doesn’t mean we can rest on our laurels. We are constantly investigating new tools and technologies that can be incorporated into the RHIZA offering that will help growers improve crop management and support better financial performance.

Don Pendergrast

The benefits of digital image analysis have long been recognised in arable crop rotations. This technology has much to offer other crops and across Agrii we are working to bring the same benefits and advantages of digital analysis to field vegetable production.

Over the winter of 2021-22, Agrii undertook a comprehensive review of the digital mapping, imaging and analysis available to better understand what was of value to growers and agronomists and what was just marketing hype.

We took this a step further and having identified gaps in the capabilities of the systems available, identified several programs and a few near-to-market systems with the potential to further enhance the RHIZA proposition.

In 2022 will take this a step further through an applied trial of the most promising imaging technologies across several field vegetable crops including onions, cabbages, carrots and lettuce. The work will consider the key metrics such as plant counts, plant health and yield estimation based on regular assessments taken during the season.

The aim is to ensure we have a comprehensive digital platform for field vegetables capable of delivering a level of insight to growers and agronomists that makes a significant difference. We expect to complete this process during 2023.

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