Tools & data
AgroScout gets $ 3 million for AI-based crop protection
AgroScout closed a $ 3 million funding round for its AI-based solution for sustainable crop protection.
AgroScout’s solution integrates external data collected by drones (together with AI software, deep learning and computer vision) to accurately and autonomously detect, identify, and monitor diseases, pests, and other agronomic problems in field crops.
20% to 40% of yield lost to disease and pests
The Israeli company says farmers lose 20% to 40% of their yield to disease and pests. “Today, to mitigate spread of disease in fields, agronomists perform manual, visual checks in different parts of the field every few days. This provides limited coverage (around 5-10%), and in most places, no scouting is done. Therefore, diseases are often only detected at later stages when the disease has escalated, and large amounts of pesticides are needed to control the problem,” says AgroScout.
Reduce use of chemicals
Its solution aims to dramatically reduce the amounts of chemicals used to treat disease. “Using less pesticides lowers costs and meets increasing regulation and consumer demand for more sustainable agricultural practices.”
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The AgroScout team together with representatives of Kibbutz Yiron - who led the investment round - and The Trendlines Group - of which AgroScout is a portfolio company - gathered for the investment signing ceremony. This was just before gatherings of this kind were disallowed due to COVID-19. - Photo: AgroScout
Affordable solution based on user-generated content
According to AgroScout, for most farmers, advanced agronomic and remote monitoring systems are too expensive and inaccessible, creating a tremendous market potential the company. “As our system relies on off-the-shelf low-cost equipment, such as smartphones and small commercial drones, we provides an affordable and easy-to-use solution based solely on user-generated content.”
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Fully autonomous solution
In 2019, AgroScout received an award of excellence by the Israel Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development. In December 2019, The BIRD Foundation awarded a conditional grant of $ 1 million for the project between AgroScout and Bird Stop (a docking system technology from Silicon Valley) to set up a fully autonomous solution for the field, enabling daily data collection. This summer, AgroScout and Birdstop will deploy this autonomous solution for a large North American potato processor. Pilot projects are also under way in Latin America with PepsiCo and its growers. In parallel to its pilot programs, commercials sales have begun in the United States, Latin America and Israel.
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