Are European Farmers Ready for Agri-Tech?

Agricultural Technology, or “agri-tech”, has proven to be one of 2017’s hottest investment sectors, attracting over $1.1billion in investment in H1 2017 alone, an increase of 56% over the same period in 2016. (AgFunder AgriFood Tech Investing Report – MidYear 2017)

But with most of this activity taking place in the US, how is the market developing in Europe, and how prepared are European farmers to invest in these novel solutions?

According to Tom Green, Chairman of UK-based farming group Spearhead International, today’s farmers are looking for solutions to deliver the following:

-Cost reductions and productivity improvements in the face of relentless pressure on margins;
-Yield and quality improvement from new genetics;
-New agronomy solutions including biological soil and crop treatments to deliver “more from less”;
-Increased process automation to mitigate shortages of labour.

“The universe of agri-tech offers a multitude of new precision agriculture solutions including transformational digital methods of data capture and analytics, genetics, mechanisation and agronomy,” says Green.

However, the challenge for farmers is choosing which solutions to adopt. “With finite resources in terms of both finance and expertise, farmers need to calculate which solutions will deliver maximum benefit to their bottom line.”

The upcoming World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit in London will showcase a cross-section of new innovation within agri-tech, including pitches from the following start-ups:

  • Agroceutical Products: Daffodil-based Alzheimer’s Treatment
  • Aspire Food Group: Precision Insect Farming
  • Cerescon: Autonomous Asparagus Harvesting
  • Ecorobotix: Smart, Robotic Weeding
  • Edete: Automated Pollination Systems
  • Fyteko: Advanced Plant Biostimulants
  • iCownect: Herd Management Software
  • Novihum Technologies: Revolutionary Soil Additives
  • Rootwave: Electrical Weed Control

Tom Green will be one of many farmers at the summit seeking new technologies, alongside more than 300 international agribusiness leaders, equipment manufacturers, biotech companies, entrepreneurs and investors.

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