July 18, 2022 3:00 pm Published by

Cosmonauts are over the moon to finally be able to host The Global Agritech Investment Assembly (GAIA) in October 2022! It’s been many years in the making and we can’t wait to learn and share with all attendees! In this blog, Green Sky Thinking, we will be recapping some of the latest news in the agritech world! 

Global Agritech Investment Assembly (GAIA) is an annual event, taking place on the 25th October 2022, that gathers leaders from the agricultural, technology, agribusiness companies and organisations together with farmers, food producers and investors from across the world – with the aim to find balance and further develop the agricultural world. The conference gives you the chance to introduce your latest products and services. Read to the end of this blog to see how you can participate at our inaugural GAIA showcase!  

Agritech is a fast-growing industry ripe with innovative opportunities and businesses. In 2019, the global agritech market was valued at US$ 17,442.7 million and is expected to reach US$ 54,247.6 million by 2030. Moreover, it has been forecasted that the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from the period 2022 till 2030 is 19.2%. 

There has been great progress in the agricultural world – the farm productivity, crop yields, sustainability, waste reduction, plant and animal health have all improved over the years due to agritech. Keep reading to learn more about the latest trends in agritech. 

The Impact of COVID-19 on the Agritech Market

The agricultural world has been keen on natural factors like climate, temperature, precipitation and soil together with human labour – cultivating the soil, connection with raising or harvesting any agricultural or horticultural commodity, management of livestock, bees, poultry etc. However, since 2020, with the impact of COVID-19, the agricultural world has been depending more on technology rather than on the natural factors. To learn more about this click here.

The pandemic became a major hindrance for many – by complicating the logistics operations, transportation, trade and by eliminating job positions. However, for some COVID-19 has offered opportunities for indoor farmers, as stated here. With the aim to escalate production, new technologies have been used – robotics, ground sensors, data intelligence, vertical farming, and precision farming.

Vertical farming, the crops can be irrigated individually and ignited with the help of smart agriculture products, enabling them to be grown year-round with less resources.You can discover more about vertical farming here

Precision farming on the other hand has the potential to improve in farming yields by ~30%. It also enables farmers with fast communications and quick data collection and analysis. More information about precision farming here.

The key factors that fuel the growth of the global agritech market, despite the vertical integration and precision farming, is the rise of investments in agritech start-ups, farm management software, supply chain tech, quality management and traceability. 

All these together are key growth areas that are driving the technology adoption in the global agriculture sector.

Technology Saving the World’s Food Crisis

Due to global disruptions such as climate change, the war in Ukraine and the COVID-19 Pandemic, technological advancements offer a promising opportunity for farms around the world to improve and increase output whilst also averting negative impacts as stated here.

It is believed, by Ishmael Sunga, CEO of the Southern African Confederation of Agricultural Unions (SACAU), that technology should be at the service of farmers, and it should be able to help solve their problems in order to reduce the world’s food crisis. Further, the USDA note that value chains are one of the new technological innovations in the agritech world increasing food production.

Sunga also argues that access to equitable value chains for all farmers has the biggest potential for impact. This means that better infrastructure for the world’s poorer agricultural communities is critical. Sunga also states that if technology is incorporated with the farming land and used properly, farmers can then double their productivity and production. That is why he insists value chains become more equitable, as it distributes fair work and fair pay for the ecosystem role that management farmers play.

Bushel Launches Digital Payment Network for Agriculture

Bushel is an independently-owned software technology company focused on developing digital tools for the agricultural supply chain. Through facilitating digital transactions, Bushel builds a digital infrastructure for the agriculture industry. Digitising agriculture resolves the issue of how farmers and agribusiness do business with each other. They need the tools to become more financially efficient and clearer on the state of their operations and that is why via technology Bushel has resolved one of the main problems in global agriculture business.

The company launches digital payment network for agriculture and so far they have established three types of payment platforms:

·        Bushel Payments™ is the preferred money movement facilitator between growers and agribusinesses already on the Bushel platform.

·        Bushel Wallet™ is the first-ever digital wallet created specifically for the complexity and scale of agribusiness and available for farmers

·        Bushel Wallet Link is an API that allows any agribusiness to embed payments in their application or web environment and connect to Bushel Wallet’s network to move money.

Charlie Laird, Director of IT Strategy of CGB states “To keep up with consumer demands for a more interactive experience, we knew we needed to provide a way to more easily transact with our customer base in a seamless and timely manner,”. 

Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Agriculture Market

Artificial Intelligence combines Precision and Vertical farming, mentioned above, with algorithms that automate disease or pest recognition which determine crop quality and quantity.

Solinftec, a company that provides farms with a sustainable future, builds technology that solves the most critical needs for the benefit of society. The company announced a $60 million growth investment by 2023. Solinftec deploys sensors, computers and displays in farm equipment to provide their customers with real-time data on crops, inputs, equipment and weather conditions. 

Solinftec’s operation management software is powered by an AI platform called Alice AI. The platform allows optimal scheduling and farm planning operations that authorise real-time adjustments and decisions. Moreover, Alice AI uses a series of data science tools, including machine learning, identification algorithms, computer vision, in addition to algorithms such as logistics, geo-positioning and clustering.

Solinftec’s CEO, Britaldo Hernandez states that “The world is facing a massive global challenge – to increase the food production by around 60% to feed the world’s population by 2050, but there is no land expansion available and we need to minimise the climate and environmental impact. In our view, smarter farming combining AI and robotics is needed.”

Internet of Things In the Agricultural World

Internet of Things (IoT) collects and provides real-time data for applications such as livestock tracking, soil temperature sensing and automated irrigation.

IoT is used to help autonomous machines make accurate decisions. This technology does not require human-to-human nor human-to-computer interaction thanks to the interrelated machines and devices that have the ability to transfer data over a network. For more information click here.

Put simply, smart farming is the use of digital technology to improve farming efforts. It uses the internet-connected devices to gain a view of the farms, adopt changes, and adjust operations to improve results. There are various examples of IoT technology that can be used according to the needs of a particular area. Some of these include monitoring climate conditions, greenhouse automation, crop monitoring, drones and livestock GPS tracking, among many others. For more information click here.

All of these new technological innovations are slowly emerging into more and more industries. That is why it is of great importance to keep up with the newest and latest trends. Cosmonauts, offers an array of professionally curated B2B events focussed on the intersection of business and technology. For more information about the conferences check out our events webpage!

GAIA is the place to be for all things agritech, where people from innovation, technology and agricultural fields meet with agribusiness companies, farmers, food producers and investors from across the world. The conference takes place on the 25th October 2022, in London, with topics such as indoor production, sustainability, modernising farming and businesses with much more will be discussed. The conference presents you with the opportunity to meet and network with agritech start-ups, established SMEs, Big Corporates and policy makers. It also allows you to explore collaboration and investment opportunities. 

See you at GAIA!

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