Converging Trends in AgTech

We are always researching the latest innovations in the agriculture technology sector for potential investments for the BSP Fund. Here are some of the stories that caught our attention this week.

Robot Farmers are the Future of Agriculture, says Government by Fiona Harvey
Development of an increasing number of “farmbots” is beginning to take place in many countries. These robots and drones are specially made to perform time-consuming agricultural tasks, such as weeding, pruning, monitoring crop growth. While not fully active yet, representatives at the Oxford Farming Conference this week expressed confidence and hope in the technology improving crop yields and productivity of English farms.

The Intersection of Two Disparate, Yet Converging Trends in Agtech by Bob Gore
The world is faced with the increasingly difficult task of producing more with less. One of the best solutions thus far is the development of efficient and effective technologies that maximize resources, such as water. These technologies, such as computer regulated irrigation systems, can not only control the water dispensed to crops but also alert the farmer on irregularities in the field.

Drones Hold Greatest Promise for Ag by The American Farm Bureau Federation
While there is still some uncertainty on the prospect of commercial use of using Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAVs, better know as drones), Kansas State University Agronomist Kevin Price believes that they “hold great promise for agriculture”. The quality of data obtained by the drones is unprecedented and holds great potential. However, in order for the drones to be truly useful in agriculture, a system or program must be developed in order to comb through the large amount of data that they accumulate.

FarmLogs Raises $4M Series A To Further Advance Farming Into The Age of Apps by Matt Burns
Michigan-based FarmLogs announced a $4 million Series A this week, led by Drive Capital. The company will use the additional capital to increase the efficiency of its product by predicting and optimizing crop rotations and automating data collection. Co-founder and CEO Jesse Vollmar states that these improvements will help to “create a smarter future for farming.” It’s a good sign for the market overall to see continued fundraising process for ag tech companies.