Our latest Discovery Room event on 15th June was all around agri-tech and gave a fascinating insight into some of the innovative opportunities, funding and skills within agriculture.
We heard from
- Jason Hayward-Jones, Founder and Managing Director of RegenFARM – he has worked with most aspects of agribusiness value-chains, from smallholder development through to large-scale arable, livestock, industrial plantations, agro-processing and manufactured food and beverages. Many farmers are keen to introduce regenerative practices on their farm but don’t always know where to start. RegenFARM is a platform using Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to help farmers grow healthy food, regenerate the soil, make more money and be part of a climate change solution.
- Sean McCarthy, Head of Market Intelligence for Satellite Applications Catapult shared how satellite technology can be applied to address challenges in agriculture and climate change: from responsible and connected supply chain initiatives, to value chain transformations and satellite enabled agri-food solutions. With an ever-growing demand for information that is accurate, personalised, localised and available globally in real-time, the use of satellites can include detection, production forecasting and modelling as well as the more obvious weather and climate information and data.
- Yve Metcalfe Tyrrell and Jake Gibson Sutton Shaw introduced the Devon Agri-Tech Accelerator Project - a collaboration between Devon CC, Duchy College Rural Business School, Business Information Point and the University of Plymouth. The multi faceted project offers opportunities for collaboration, information sharing and Knowledge Exchange as well as a Support Grant Project for early stage development of innovative agri-tech ideas.
- Kate Doodson, is joint Chief Executive at Cosmic who have been delivering digital skills training and support for over 25 years. Improving digital participation can the help the farming community to create value by harnessing the productivity benefits of digital business through communication, transacting and problem solving to marketing, cyber confidence and data skills. Looking forward, the possibilities of blockchain are evident for the sector too.
The engagement from attendees was noticeable, with plenty of questions being asked of the speakers. It’s just as well we have a further agri-tech event planned for 12 October 2022 when we can explore the sector still further!
Funded through the European Regional Development Fund (“ERDF”) and the University of Exeter, the ‘Discovery Room’ events are part of our wider University of Exeter Enterprise Zone (“UEEZ”) project which provides expert business support to Devon-based start-ups and SMEs and aims to improve the opportunities for innovative business to achieve high growth and accelerate their development. UEEZ engagement activities focus on building new collaborations, forging partnerships and supporting the development of the regional innovation ecosystem by connecting the businesses and start-ups with researchers, experts and the wider community.
To learn more please visit the project’s web pages and the SETsquared Exeter events page.