New and Emerging AgTech Companies in 2020

Now that Coronavirus has shut down actual field days, AgTech events and trade shows, (for who knows how long), staying up to date with who's who of new AgTech will need to be done online. As we can no longer gather at AgTech shows to find out more about emerging technology providers, we thought everyone might like to find out more about some of the emerging ‘startups' in Australian AgTech 2020. 

The vendors who have been through the registration process to feature on AgTech Finder are highlighted. These vendors have deployed a number of units across Australia and if you want more information about any of them you can check out their listings on the Finder.  

Many have provided AgTech Finder with case studies, video demonstrations, details about their customer data privacy policies and a lot of other useful pieces of other information to help make your decision on whether they’re right for you, or not. 

Read on to discover more about the 20 plus emerging AgTech vendors and find out more about the benefits of the technologies they're providing Australian farmers. 

In alphabetical order, here are 21 emerging AgTech vendors along with a short bio about what they have to offer producers…

Aeration Manager 

If you store grain or feed in silos you understand just how essential it is to make sure you have the right air flow coming your grain to stop mould forming. The Aeration Manager turns farmers into grain storage professionals by providing a fully automated system to control the aeration of fans. Using a unique predictive algorithm, the controller cools, dries and maintains the perfect aeration settings for your fans to keep your grain in the condition you want – or to prepare it for sale.  

Henk and his son, Michael are the founders. Email henk.degraaf@ia-group.com.au for more information.  

Agerris 

The Agerris team helps growers do more on-farm through easy to use field robots that you can put to work to reduce labour costs, while also making lighter and easier work of manual tasks like picking and sorting.  

At evokeAG, the founders were demonstrating their light-weight solar-electric field robotic platforms – one of which was a simple lightweight utility table with electric motors that could follow you down the vineyards, between orchard trees or between rows of vegetables to provide a waist high platform for sorting and packing.  

Discover more about Agerris here 

AgKonect 

AgKonect develops field data systems to manage things like pest monitoring. One system they were demonstrating was a mobile system that removes the administration burden involved when completing the paperwork required when exporting to protocol countries including China, Japan, South Korea and the USA. 

AgKonect already has a few runs on the board within the mango industry where they created an app that sped up data capture, improved data quality and simplified process management.   

AgKonect are a registered vendor on AgTech Finder. Visit the AgKonect vendor highlight page for contact details. 

AgUnity 

Small holder farms make up a large proportion of producers, and they’re often challenged by things like poor-record keeping and farming inefficiencies. AgUnity has developed a smartphone app that is especially designed to deal with low-connectivity environments and helps reduce the costs of sending data from remote locations up to the cloud or back to the office. The app is specifically geared towards enabling secure peer-to-peer transactions and the company that powers AgUnity (Axsari) has decades of experience working with remote, last-mile ag communities and a long list of existing clients including the UN World Food Programme and has won quite a few awards over the last few years. 

Discover more about AgUnity here 

Ally’s Basket 

Founded by Ally Tehan, Joe Puntoriero and Mark Jones, this website pulls together lots of products from Australian suppliers and markets them to South East Asia through online shopping sites. They’re based in Melbourne and have an office in Singapore which manages deliveries of Australian products to their customers including both consumers and businesses.  

Ally and her team should soon be making their way onto AgTech Finder. For now you can contact Ally and the team by emailing hello@allysbasket.com

Athena Irrigation 

Scheduling irrigation systems to turn on and off based on the data provided by moisture sensors in the soil takes the guesstimation out of irrigation and helps minimise wastage and reduce costs. The Athena system is based on direct plant water needs rather than methods that use soil moisture probes and thermal imaging. Using a number of sensors, real-time data of crop water status is collected via a private LoRaWAN network so farmers have the grapevine breathe in near real-time to better understand when vines should be irrigated. Infra-red sensors are used to allow targeted irrigation scheduling, plant water status monitoring, as well as to provide information about how vines are recovering after heat stress events.  

The Athena team should soon be making their way onto AgTech Finder. For now you can contact Contact Vinay Pagay or Fran Doerflinger at info@athenairrigation.com 

FarmLab 

FarmLab is a soil science software package that helps producers and agronomists map and sample their soil using normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and gamma radiometrics.  The maps they can generate of farmland with their software can be used to baseline and monitor the improvement in soil carbon, improve the accuracy of the application of fertilizer, and to help choose the best agricultural use for a specific soil type. 

Their software is available for desktop and mobile and they have a mobile app that can be used out in the paddock to view and manage sample points while out in the paddock. 

Discover more about FarmLab here 

GoannaAg 

GoannaAg has a nifty range of low cost, long range sensors and network gear that can be set up to provide growers with data-driven insights to help simplify farm resource management and improve water-use efficiency. One of their sensor solutions for water telemetry was developed in partnership with CSIRO and CRDC and it both measures the real-time stress of a plant due to heat or moisture stress, as well as accurately predicting the future onset of stress to help determine the best irrigation timing and quantity to get ‘more crop per drop’. 

GoannaAg is a registered vendor on AgTech Finder. Find out about all of their products and solutions on their vendor highlight page (Discovery Ag, trading as GoannaAg).

Has Algae 

Did you know that one of the common nutritional deficiencies associated with plant based diets is a deficiency of omega-3 fatty acids? Has Algae sustainably farms micro-algae from Queensland. Their algae product had 40% protein with a rich amino acid profile, is 11% complex carbohydrates and 5% fibre and is packed full of minerals and vitamins. They’re currently developing products with food manufacturers and have already run a bunch of public tasting sessions with food incorporating their algae including breads, pasta and ice-cream. 

For more information reach out to Tim Gardner or Brendan Fu at admin@hasalgae.com 

Hillridge Technology 

AgTech Finder first met this insurance provider in Orange last year at the Australian National Field Day event. Founded by Dale Schilling and Dai-Kyu Kim Hillridge Technology connects Australian farmers and producers with overseas underwriters who provide weather insurance and crop yield insurance to protect against extreme weather. The first insurance related products they’re selling to Australia protects against drought, frost, heat stress and excess rain.  By using the Hillridge online portal, farmers can create a customized policy, get a quote in just a few minutes and view the status of their policy at any time online.  

Hillridge Technology is a newly registered vendor on AgTech Finder. Find out about all of their products and solutions on their vendor highlight page.

HiveHaven 

Native bees are almost essential to pollinate crops and over the last few years Australia is starting to see growth in the Australian stingless native bee industry that suggests there will soon be commercial opportunities. Hive Haven have manufactured an innovative bee box that is specifically designed to maintain a stable temperature while also allowing the easy harvest of honey and propolis.  

For a complete run down on the ‘V9 Hive Technology’ email hello@hivehaven.com.au 

LiveStock Pricing 

Robert Kelly is the founder of LiveStock Pricing who have been developing a livestock price discovery platform that launched back in December 2018 and that now has over 5,500 users. The platform combines the latest sheep, cattle and goat price grids, and market reports, and allows participants in the Red Meat industry to access information in a mobile app. Farmers can access sale-yard reports, the latest price grids and they can also setup customised notifications to let them know about sale prices and reports that are of most interest to them.

Contact Robert Kelly if you’d like to know more at robert.kelly@livestockpricing.com.au 

LYRO 

Building robots that can grip things is a complicated process that involves bringing three types of robotic design technologies together - ‘grippers’ (the hands), ‘vision systems (the eyes), and ‘artificial intelligence and programmable logic’ (the brains). LYRO are building robotic systems that can pick and pack fruit, bringing these three processes together to help solve the common problem that horticulture producers face - leaving crops unpicked because they can’t find the right labour at the right time. In 2017 they led the team that won the ‘Olympics’ of robotic picking by out-picking and packing 15 other teams from around the robot world – and they’ve since come a long way.  

LYRO is a newly registered vendor on AgTech Finder. For more info or to discuss a demo check out their vendor highlight page.

MALDI-ID 

Founded by Sofie De Meyer and Daniel Kollehn, MALDI-ID specialises in micro-organism identification ranging from bacteria and yeast to fungi and insects. They do this using mass spectrometry to obtain protein profiles of unknown organisms and then compare them with their reference database to provide an accurate match.  

You can find MALDI-ID on AgTech Finder.

Nexgen Plants 

Crop loss due to pests and diseases is challenging to manage. Nexgen Plants has developed a technology platform that improves plant performance and plant genetics by using native plant DNA and chemistry to identify which action should be taken to best control weeds and diseases. The Nexgen team started by first developing virus control for several crops using genome editing and they’re now one of the first companies in the world developing sustainable weed control products. 

The Athena team should soon be making their way onto AgTech Finder. For now, you can get more information by emailing Philippe Herve or Liddy McCall at info@nexgenplants.com.

NuPoint GPS and Data Solutions 

Tracking where your vehicles and staff are can help increase productivity by letting you know in real-time how a job is progressing or how much time you’ve got before another job can begin. NuPoint have a system that allows customers to connect vehicles, spray controllers, weather stations (you name it!) so you they can better access detailed reporting or provide customers with proof of placement or task completion receipts. Customers can access the whereabouts and reports on their desktop computer or phone and can also send that data to other reporting systems via an API to provide third parties with a more complete view of the operation and activities of the business. 

The NuPoint team should soon be making their way onto AgTech Finder. For now, you can get more information by emailing Lance Nuttall at lance@nupoint.com.

Pairtree 

Pairtree is a dashboard creator that allows you to plug a variety of data sources into an online dashboard so that all the most important data indicators that a farm manager, farm finance team, logistics manager, or anyone else in the operation needs to look at are in one central dashboard. They have demonstrated their capabilities through a number of collaborative projects with NSW DPI, MLA and WA DPIRD and have a number of dashboards set up for all different types of farming that can demo and help get operational.  

Discover more about Pairtree here.

Smart Paddock 

Ear tags that track the whereabouts of livestock have been around for a while – but they’re now more reliable, cheap to buy and can provide farmers with a lot more information than just a GPS location. Smart Paddock ear tags provide real time information about livestock health (temperature monitoring), behavior and geolocation as well. Their BlueBell tags can transmit data over very long distances and are re-useable. 

Discover more about Smart Paddock on AgTech Finder by visiting their vendor highlight page. 

Sparrows.io 

Sparrows tracking devices are about the size of a pack-of-cards and can provide real-time updates on location, temperature, humidity, light, shock and stoppages – perfect for providing real time updates to logistics teams who want improved visibility and transparency over goods being freighted and shipped.  

The Sparrows devices connect to 4G and 5G (LTE IoT Cat-M1) networks with a 2G (GSM) fallback to provide global tracking without the need for your own network infrastructure.  

Contact Andrea Watson at andrea@sparrows.io 

Swan Systems 

Swan provide data analytics solutions to help farms better manage water and nutrition. Their cloud-based software platform can be used to read a variety of data inputs including forecasted weather, irrigation volumes, satellite imagery and soil moisture – then deliver recommendations on how best to schedule irrigation to increase yields. The Swan system was developed and fine-tuned with a team of farmers, scientists and computer programmers who spent a number of years working on large-scale commercial irrigated cropping operations.  

Discover more about Swan Systems here on AgTech Finder.

If you would like to know more about any of the emerging companies profiled on this page please email agtechfinder@foodagility.com.

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