Being able to see technology up close can often give a better understanding of how it may apply in your own business or on your own farm. The AgTech demonstration farms allow you to gain a better understanding of the technology, its benefits and limitations, how the data is viewed and decisions which can be made from it, all from an independent source of information, rather than a sales pitch.
More and more we are seeing fantastic examples of demonstration sites provided by willing participants to various programmes and projects. These demonstration sites offer the ability to showcase multiple types of devices, connectivity solutions and outcomes in one place.
The NSW DPI– Farms of the Future program has installed a range of commercially available field sensor technologies on NSW DPI Research Stations and on grower and producer properties. Multiple connectivity solutions were also enabled to test and demonstrate the benefits that can be delivered to farming via AgTech. This program also allowed multiple suppliers or technologies to be deployed side by side.
AgTech pilot farm – Blayney, NSW
One such property is “Angullong” run by James Crossing. James’ business consists of both cattle and wine grape enterprises. The property is 2,000 hectares in size and is situated in hilly terrain near Blayney NSW.
Aims of the installation include:
- weather and water monitoring
- cattle weight monitoring
- sensors such as soil probes and vine growth sensors
- video surveillance
- improved connectivity across the property,
The AgTech devices and connectivity solutions implemented on the site were selected to improve labour efficiency and management decisions.
James thinks it is valuable to build on this and describes the outcomes of the AgTech as well as the benefits.
“Wi-Fi connectivity across the property allows the reliable transfer of data and extended connectivity. Towers are installed to give coverage across the important points of the property and include a series of repeaters all the way to the river pump. This is quite an achievement in the hilly terrain with a variation of 200 m elevation. This network has also improved the usefulness of mobile phones throughout the property.”
This video with James Crossing provides a farm overview and the technology implemented on his livestock and irrigated vineyard enterprise. (In the video at 3:30, James recommends Agtech to other farmers and some of the benefits gained.)
- Water monitoring
- Soil probes
- Rain gauges
- Weather stations
- Livestock tracking
- Livestock weighing
- Vineyard monitoring
- Irrigation control and monitoring
- Dashboards and platforms
- 3g/4g CAT M1
AgTech demonstration farms – South Australia
South Australian producers are able to view technology solutions across four AgTech Demonstration Farms across the state, focusing on livestock, viticulture, horticulture and cropping industries. Producers can either visit in person or tour the farm and view the technology via virtual tours.
Additionally, technologies are being demonstrated on producers properties on Kangaroo Island, with funding provided by the Australian Government’s Regional Recovery Partnerships program, to support KI producers to recover from the 2019-20 bushfires. The AgTech Program on KI allsows to focus on livestock, viticulture, cropping, honey production and aquaculture industries.
The 1,100 ha Struan Farm is situated approximately 370 km south-east of Adelaide and 17 km south of Naracoorte. The 300 ha Kybybolite Farm is approximately 35 km from the Struan Farm.
- Environmental monitoring
- Water and irrigation management and monitoring
- Remote monitoring
- Operational optimisation
- Weather and rainfall
- Livestock management
- Crop and vine imagery
- Weed management
- 3g/4g CAT M1
Opportunities to view these AgTech enabled farms is keenly sought after.
- This article was peer-reviewed by Robyn Terry and Tom Flanagan.
- Image: Bushlinx weather station courtesy Department of Primary Industries and Regions, SA (PIRSA)