We are 7.8 billion. We need to provide sustainable food to all of us.
Farmers get rid of insects and fungus using a big variety of chemicals, that are getting more normed and limited every year all over the world. Of course when you have a huge amount of land cultivated with just one type of plant the risk to see it destroyed by parasites is higher.
At the same time, getting rid of the need of this chemicals will represent a better and healthier production with lower costs.
This is particularly the case for vineyards: world wine production in the last 20 years keep oscillating between 260 and 300 million hl but the organic vineyards share tripled in the last 10 years and the wine production will keep growing its market share 34% in the next 3 years.
- Italy is the top organic wine producer in Europe.
The key here is maintaining biological diversity and balance. The solution we are looking for lets the farmer focus his attention on what’s the most important things keeping the costs down: one of the most expensive situation they get is when they reach biological imbalance by killing the wrong things.
During this sprint we interviewed 100 farmers to understand their willingness to purchase a technological solution and 91% of them said they “will definitely pay” to be helped during the day by day operations.
From a technological point of view, we ran a few tests confirming that using computer vision and machine learning it is possibile to detect the distribution and concentration of Copper Sulphate and Sulphur on vine leaves.
NASA: hardware and data collection has been the same for a few years but today we see one e of the biggest value added is the distribution of valuable information to the farmers in an actionable way. So the value it is not just computer vision and machine learning but it’s also the mobile app giving intelligence to the data that makes it easy for the farmers to predict and organize their season. (full article here)
The perfect solution will encourage organic adoption while enabling the farmer to move from the block management to a per-vine management model, while reducing costs and operations and decisions times.
Right now we need to work together with farmers to understand the best way to collect the leaves magnified images (farmer smartphone by hand? robots? vineyard smart devices? Those are basic design questions) and we will work to get funding during this accelerator contest
“A precise knowledge of the vineyard will simplify and accelerate my transition
to organic” Lorenzo B. Treviso Prosecco Producer