Author: Matt Peskett

Matt is a digital media consultant with over 20 years' experience working with publishing and events companies in the science, technology, food and agricultural sectors. With a passion for growing his own fruit and veg (on two allotments) Matt also exhibits 300kg pumpkins and is an RHS Chelsea volunteer. With a sizeable horticultural social media presence Matt has been a finalist in the Garden Media Guild's blog of the year and social media awards. He built farmingtechnologytoday.com to highlight larger scale sustainable innovations in food production.

The Fitbit has been around for over a decade now, in that time it’s been encouraging humans to be more active and has no doubt helped to improve the health of millions. In more recent years the smartwatch has taken a fair chunk of the fitness tracking market (to the detriment of Fitbit’s share price) but there’s a growing market for fitness wearables… the customers have four legs and four stomachs. Researchers at Tarleton State University’s SW Regional Dairy Center in Stephenville, Texas, have recently been trialling Fitbit-like devices on cow herds. These bovine wearables enable the team at TSU…

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Boehringer Ingelheim’s U.S. Animal Health Business launched a new combined vaccine this week to protect poultry from three highly contagious and life threatening diseases. Marek’s Disease IBD – Infectious Bursal Disease (classic and variant types) Newcastle Disease. The new vaccine called VAXXITEK® HVT+IBD+ND provides a strong immune foundation and optimized protection against all three. Historically Boehringer Ingelheim has offered two different vaccines that guard against the these diseases, but they could not be used together. Poultry farmers and veterinarians have had to choose whether to vaccinate against Marek’s Disease and Infectious Bursal Disease (VAXXITEK HVT+IBD) OR Marek’s Disease and Newcastle Disease…

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Was the cup of coffee you drank this morning sourced in a responsible and sustainable way? For an ever increasing number of consumers such matters are of increasing importance as they take steps to limit their impact on the environment. Cheaper methods of coffee farming which make use of pesticides and artificial fertilisers are not necessarily sustainable in the long term for either the environment or the health and wealth of the farmer, or his or her local community. Consumers who want organic sustainable coffee have to trust in the product information on offer at the time of purchase when…

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To successfully grow record breaking giant pumpkins plants have to be carefully pruned and nurtured, watered in abundance and regularly fed with the correct balance of nutrients. Too much calcium and not enough magnesium and it can all be over. The really serious growers send off their soil for detailed analysis before they start wasting their time and money on high NPK fertilisers, but this takes time. What if growers of all crops worldwide could conduct soil tests themselves, a test which went beyond the existing readily available basic pH tests and instead gave instant details of nitrogen dioxide, aluminum,…

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Awarded a Silver Award in the Agricultural Innovation of the Year at the British Farming awards 2019, Breeder is a new online livestock tool designed to help beef farmers and processors. By gathering animal information directly from farms and making it available in the cloud (using blockchain technology), beef supplies will be more easily predicted nationwide. How does Breedr work? Breedr connects to a farm’s own management system and collects data per animal to create a picture of how quickly each is growing and when it might be ready for sale. When aggregated across entire herds this make it easier…

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Sony Electronics is to add AI-based imaging capabilities to the latest version of its Smart Agriculture Solution. Version 2.0 of the software, which is planned for roll-out in March 2020, will comprise a drone-mounted multispectral sensing unit and Fast Field Analyzer image analytics software for in-the-field crop management, monitoring and insights, alongside Sony’s imaging and AI-based technology for stand counting. Stand counting allows growers to assess planting quality, enabling replanting decisions to be made earlier and with greater accuracy, especially when analysing large areas. Sony, which entered the agriculture space in February this year with the launch of the Smart…

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If farmers ever wished for a ‘per plant’ view of their crops then UK based Small Robot Company (SRC) could be the genie in the agricultural lamp. Following their success in 2018 with the IET’s Horizontal Innovation Award (thanks to ‘Harry’ their drilling and planting robot), SRC went on to raise £1.17 million in a crowd funding exercise. 12 months later a commercial weed mapping service is set to roll out at four trial farms. The robotic monitoring vehicle ’Tom’ will traverse fields with a focus on recognising broad leaved weeds such as thistles, chickweed and fat hen. The information…

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