AgroWizard helps growers collect data automatically

Item date:

27 November 2020

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Nieuws

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Automated data collection can make a farmer's life a lot easier, but it is also costly and complicated. AgroWizard helps growers and other agricultural entrepreneurs gain more insight into their plots based on data. An excellent first product is the Treewizard: a stem thickness meter that fully automatically measures the stem thickness of avenue and fruit trees on a plot.

AgroWizard is a joint venture founded by Genzai, Tree Nursery Fleuren and Bluehub. From the Brightlands Campus Greenport Venlo, they work together to "magic" with data. They are developing technology to collect data that will help growers reduce costs and increase yields.

Artificial Intelligence

AgroWizard uses artificial intelligence. That means they create systems or machines that mimic our own intelligence to perform tasks and can improve themselves during that process based on the information gathered. Roy Lenders is involved with AgroWizard as the owner of Genzai. He sees many opportunities for artificial intelligence in the agri-food sector. "It's a data-rich environment with a lot of manual work. Artificial intelligence is a complex technology, which will eventually replace the repetitive monotonous work in agriculture and horticulture."

TreeWizard

The first product from AgroWizard is the TreeWizard, a stem thickness meter that fully automatically measures the stem thickness of avenue and fruit trees on a plot. The meter has multiple cameras, which is installed on a tractor to then, using artificial intelligence, measure the stem thicknesses. This data, including GPS location, is transmitted to the cloud.

A tree spends an average of two years at a grower, according to Lenders. The stem thickness ultimately determines the sale price of the tree. "Take tree nursery Fleuren, there are about 2.5 million trees there. You now have to take a notepad, pen and tape measure to manually measure the stem thickness of each tree. That would take a month! The TreeWizard automatically measures the trunk thickness and the GPS location of the tree. It knows exactly where each tree is located, so that you can keep an eye on its growth and adjust it where necessary.

Measure

This hardware can be attached to any vehicle, from tractor to truck. "It took some puzzling, but the hardware can now be used for multiple purposes. What the hardware measures is determined by which measuring apps the customer selects in the appstore. For tree growers that is the stem thickness, but we can also measure the height of the tree, the amount of blossoms or fruits. We can actually measure anything that is visible to the naked eye".

Sharing costs

The opportunities for AI are enormous, according to Lenders. "But its application is still very limited at the moment because it is a complex and expensive technology, which you cannot invest in as an individual grower. It is now a big hype, but you always have to keep looking at where it helps and whether it is interesting for a large group. Then you can share the costs together and it becomes interesting."

Read more about this topic: AgroWizard and Brightlands Campus Greenport Venlo