We are always researching the latest innovations in the agriculture sector for potential investments for the BSP Fund. Here are some of the stories that caught our attention in the irrigation and agriculture fields. If you’re working on an innovative irrigation system, apply for investment consideration here.
Government Eyes Irrigation Law to Boost Farm Sector by Madalitso Mwando
Zimbabwe, previously one of the largest food producers in Africa, has struggled in past years with countrywide food insecurity. While there are many causes to this insecurity, the government has identified the sporadic rain cycles as one of the largest problems. This has led the ministry, in collaboration with the WFP, to introduce funding for increased irrigation systems throughout the country in order to support farmer’s ability to control their crops and increase yields by 200%, on average.
Using Wireless Sensors to Solve Himachal Pradesh’s Water Problems by Saurabh Mehra
While many regions around the world have acknowledged the power that irrigation technologies provide to farmers, there is a general lack of funding to improve these basic systems. For example, the state of Himachal Pradesh in Northern India has water storage units to hold the heavy rains for drier season. However, these tanks have no system in place to monitor when to release water and when to collect water. In response to this common problem, AirJaldi hosted a workshop on the uses of wireless sensor networks to help solve environmental issues. These sensors could be used in conjunction with irrigation storage tanks in order to conserve water more effectively.
A Plan to Bring Sun-Powered Irrigation to Poor Farmers by Andrew C. Revkin
Paul Polak has working with his company, IDE, to develop lost cost solutions to increase agricultural yields for the world’s poorest farmers. Working with drip irrigation systems, Polak initially developed to treadle pump for farmers to pump water into their fields. However, he has recently been working with a team of engineers to create a solar powered pumping system that is affordable for farmers living on $3- $5 a day. This system would allow farmers to grow a greater variety of crops, with higher yields in order to increase their income.
Irrigation Technology Company Netafirm Wins 2013 Stockholm Industry Water Award by Leon Kaye
Netafirm, an Israeli company development drip irrigation technology, was awarded Stockholm International Water Institute’s Industry Water Award for their work to maximize the impact of water in irrigation. It is estimated that between 70%-90% of the world’s fresh water goes towards farming. Through drip irrigation, agricultural water consumption is cut by as much as 50% as compared to conventional irrigation techniques.