Chenin Blanc. Chardonnay. Pinotage. Merlot. With over 3000 primary grape producers, South Africa is the 12th leading exporter of wine in the world, with a total annual trade value of $716, 915, 797. It goes without saying that wine farming is a lucrative industry - which is why you need to stay up to date with the latest technology to ensure that you stay ahead of the game. For over two decades field crop farmers have been using aerial imagery to help them better manage risk and production on their farms.
It’s no secret that macadamia nuts are fast becoming SA’s leading crop. Yielding R374 000 per hectare, macadamia nuts are especially lucrative, and in the currently competitive market, superior crop management is essential. To safeguard your investment, Aerobotics offers high-resolution drone imagery and cutting-edge algorithms to make sure that your crops maintain their quality and value.
A podcast by Ton Dobbe – Chief Inspiration Officer, Value Inspiration.
Listen to the podcast here.
“Every week I interview entrepreneurs and experts from around the world to share their big idea about new forms of value creation and the potential we can unlock when technology augments the unique strengths of people to deliver remarkable impact.
I got inspired by the big idea behind Aerobotics, hence I invited Tim Willis, CFO and Head of Growth at Aerobotics, to be a guest on my podcast.”
We’re excited to announce that the first of August marks a milestone in our Tech Development history; we are now able to serve the 170k hectares of vineyards on our doorstep in the Western Cape. We’re a South African AgTech company which has built a smart scouting platform to help Farmers identify pests and diseases in the tree crop space early-on over the past 4 years. Farmers are seeing the value in being able to find early stage problems, with 40% of the South African macadamia nut industry (the largest macadamia export market in the world) and 20% of the country’s citrus Growers using our software.
How to tackle the devastating disease of Huanglongbing
Can you imagine a world without citrus? Huanglongbing (HLB), also known as citrus greening, has fast become one of the most destructive and devastating diseases affecting citrus orchards around the world. Since no cure is known, farmers have no choice but to eradicate infected trees and replace them with clean nursery trees. In some cases, where sections of orchards cannot be saved, farmers have had to claim compensation from local government.
Farming is not like most jobs. It requires patience, passion, and years of experience, yet farmers are still faced with the unpredictable nature of the industry. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to have detailed programs in place to effectively measure and monitor the production line on one’s farm.
Identifying possible threats and diseases before they manifest is crucial. Luckily for one of Aerobotics’s citrus farmers, Robert Paterson, Aeroview made an astonishing find from Paterson’s recently uploaded drone data.
Globally, Farmers depend on manual methods to carry them through the rollercoaster of harvest season. At Aerobotics, we understand the precise needs of this sector; bringing the precision and accountability common to automated sectors, to farmers and employees alike.
Our yield-mapping programme redesigns how growers can track and manage their yields, by tapping into the organisation’s existing framework.
It’s no secret that for any farmer, an integrated health management programme is the key to enhanced productivity and performance. At the heart of this, is the ability to drive preventative checks and balances to stay on-top of disease and pests, before they can inflict harm.
Citrusdal farmer and respected Aeroview client, Robert Paterson, experienced first-hand just how valuable early detection can be.
Crop scouting is a crucial step in pest and disease management. It allows farm managers to quantify the pressure of a pest or diseases within a field. Whenever a crop is being grown, there is always the chance of that crop being attacked by insects or plant pathogens which can cause devastating crop losses if they are not found early enough for preventative measures to be put in place.
Jaco wakes up early from his alarm and checks his watch: 6AM, 1 October 2050. While his personal robot makes his coffee, a heads-up display updates him on what has happened over night: A new outbreak of Thrips was detected on 50 citrus trees in Orchard B, and his drone is in the process of spraying the problem. Another flight has been scheduled for tomorrow to monitor the impact of the treatment. Jaco then gets on with drinking his coffee.
Is this really coming? How far is it away?
Aerial data-analytics specialist Aerobotics has secured a joint R8 million seed-funding round from 4Di, an independent early-stage technology venture-capital firm in Cape Town, and the Savannah Fund in Kenya.
Aerobotics has developed data-analytics platform Aeroview, which uses satellites, drones and artificial intelligence to help farmers optimise crop performance and reduce input costs. Aeroview provides farmers with the data to track crop health, growth and moisture levels down to individual plants, and to action this data through variable-rate fertiliser maps and yield estimates.
Amsterdam-based big data company Xomnia joined forces with Aerobotics this July for a mutually beneficial knowledge-sharing experience.
Xomnia partner Pieter Boon spent a few weeks in South Africa, swapping ideas and insights with the Aerobotics team. Aerobotics, which provides cutting-edge data analytics from drone aerial imagery, works in the same Artificial Intelligence and data analytics space as Xomnia. The two companies feature similar skill sets.