Agro-Technology Case Studies

Goals

To identify 2-3 case studies of agro-technologies fall into any of the following categories: Temperature control of fields, real-time monitoring, tracking from farm to fork, refrigeration technology for long-distances and/or perishables, smart factories or packing houses for fruits, or NB-IoT applications. Each case study should ideally provide: 1) an analysis of how the company is using the technology and what the benefits/results of the use are, and 2) one data point/statistic reflecting the general use of the technology in the farming industry (e.g. adoption rate, profit increase, cost reduction, time saving, etc). When looking for companies to focus on, we will prioritize those that are using the technologies for banana or pineapple production. If this isn't available, we will expand to other types of fruit production.

Early Findings

DSTE Capital Limited

  • DSTE Capital Limited was launched in 2019 in Labuan, Malaysia and is a global agricultural chain. They work with "the world’s top experts in big data, cloud computing, blockchain, Internet of things (IoT), and artificial intelligence to develop, research and map the layout of the global agricultural industry chain."
  • They have recently started deploying smart farming technologies in all DSTE-owned farms. Their first phase is to plant two million MD2 pineapple plants on 100 acres (40.4ha) in DSTE-owned farms.
  • “In the next six to 12 months, they intend to plant 1,000 acres (404.6ha) of MD2 pineapples in their farms across various states in Malaysia. "
  • Once completed, DSTE Capital Limited will be the largest producer of MD2 pineapples in Malaysia.
  • “One MD2 pineapple plant can produce four seeds and a 0.4ha plot can accommodate 20,000 MD2 pineapple plants. In 16 months, this will result in additional 80,000 seeds for farmers to start their MD2 pineapple farming.”
  • They are aiming to solve the issue of demand, especially from China, where demand is high and where they currently supply only 7% of the total MD2 pineapple market.
  • They also aim to resolve the lack of MD2 pineapple seeds in the plantation market.

DSTE's Agro-Technology

  • DSTE will also be implementing "cutting-edge technology model of IoT and blockchain technology that includes commercial trade, market operations and currency issuance to ensure that the agricultural sector meets modern day needs."
  • DSTE's hardware offerings include "automation and control systems such as Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers, guidance and steering devices, as well as Variable Rate Technology (VRT) devices, livestock monitoring hardware such as RFID tags and readers, sensors, GPS, fish farming hardware that includes GPS/GNSS and sensors and smart greenhouse hardware containing HVAC systems, LED grow lights and sensors that forms a major part of the smart farming market."
  • Their software offerings segment includes "digital systems, cloud and analytics services, as well as big data and machine learning. Both hardware and software offerings will be used in DSTE’s MD2 pineapple farm."
  • DSTE’s Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT) is able to "make ‘farm-to-fork’ reality on a larger scale where all transactional records are recorded on DSTE’s DLT system. Via this system, it aims to prevent food fraud, false labelling and redundant intermediaries. Farmers will be able to trace their crops, consumers will know the origin of the food they eat and the quality of the food is assured."

Chiquita

  • "Chiquita, a Swiss producer and distributor of bananas, has ordered 2,500 Star Cool Integrated containers from Maersk Container Industry (MCI) to ensure its fruit retains freshness during shipping."
  • 1000 of the integrated containers that were ordered are "equipped with MCI’s Star Cool CA (Controlled Atmosphere) system, which effectively preserves the freshness of bananas during transit. "
  • "By controlling the ripening, Star Cool CA ensures an extended transportation window of up to 45 days and the arrival of the produce in perfect condition for a prolonged shelf life in the supermarkets. "
  • This technology helps to transport bananas over long distances, since "its airtight integrated container design stops the fruit from ripening through restricting the consumption of oxygen. "
  • "Shippers can monitor the balance of the atmosphere inside the container and control the amount of carbon dioxide, oxygen and nitrogen. "

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