The agri-food industry is immersed in an unstoppable transformation process to adapt to the consumers' new habits and demands, as they increasingly seek more healthy and sustainable products. The goal of the iAgri project, an industrial research initiative, is achieving the implementation of a new eco-sustainable agriculture model, which guarantees the productivity, quality, and sustainability of crops. The project aims at doing it by designing and developing an intelligent platform for the storage, treatment, and management of biomarkers and relevant indicators for agri-food production.
This platform will reduce production costs, optimize agricultural management (fertilizers, irrigation, control of pathogens, harvest time, physiological adaptation of the crop to weather conditions), and certify the quality of food and the sustainability of agricultural production.
iAgri, a project coordinated by OnTech and developed by the biotechnology company Econatur, the innovative solutions company Solutia Digital Health, and the University of Seville, is developing an artificial intelligence algorithm that analyzes the data from sensors installed on the La Añoreta farm (Cordoba) and that informs the farmer of the different situations that are occurring in the plantations.
The analysis of this data will allow researchers to advance their investigations to be able to predict risks, such as pests, diseases, water stress, solar radiation stress, salinity stress, poor vegetative development, or fruit set failure. The algorithm should alert farmers of the possible risks that may arise in the future, anticipating and thus avoiding possible damage to the crops.
Another objective pursued by the iAgri project is to determine whether the crop is sustainable or not by analyzing the measurements of the sensors. The function of the artificial intelligence system will be to assess the situation and notify producers so they can take the appropriate measures indicated by the experts.
One of the main values of this project is that it will give agri-food SMEs access to the tools available to large companies, which would otherwise be difficult to manage. Small agricultural producers will be able to take advantage of all the data collected in the platform's databases to optimize production and receive assistance in decision-making, promoting the quality and productivity of their crops.
SMEs that distribute and sell these agri-food products will also clearly benefit. The iAgri project will develop a certification standard in eco-sustainable agriculture based on productivity, nutritional quality, and environmental sustainability data, which will allow distributors to easily homologate suppliers.
Finally, this industrial research initiative will also benefit the final consumer, who will be able to obtain healthier and higher quality products in nearby distribution channels and at reasonable prices.
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