The robotic revolution has spread throughout Australia
/ Images / change / v1 / crop / frm / f6wVSEq8bzkpdhMY2ZQ8UE / 38e61814-2deb-4272-8c2a-5f8c9f29dbf5.JPG / r3_265_5182_3191_w1200_h678_fmax.jpg
Learn how robots, such as digital growers, can solve weed labor challenges by weeding.
2021-09-16T06: 00: 00 + 10: 00
Controlling Weed and Labor Challenges are two of the biggest challenges facing fruit and vegetable growers.
But as robots begin to move across Australia, farmers may soon have another weapon in their arsenal.
On the southeast corner of Queensland, four robots are seen preparing fertile soil for farmland in the Locker Valley and intellectual rim.
They are part of Hagris’ growing digital pharmaceutical fleet with eight robots operating on farms in Victoria and one on NSW farms.
According to Agriiris Robotics Technician and operator Andrew Witsedd, the digital farm is designed to be flexible and can be configured for rows of 1.5 to 3 meters.
It is powered by two, 24-volt electric motors and has a chain drive to lower the machine.
“Everything is electronic, so there is no oil change or anything else to do with your tractors,” Mr. Whitzide said.
Repairs can be made within an hour of a month, as opposed to a five- or six-hour drop on the tractor.
Two cameras feed information to the crop dashboard, and Agriris uses machine learning to help identify and distinguish crops from weeds.
The robot connects to the tablet via wifi and the remote control operates on the Allora network, enabling remote access.
Two devices are commercially available. An in-line and in-row weed killer and smart obstacle that can detect and maintain row depth as well as run weed dryers and tennis.
Calfresch CEO Richard Gorman Jr. jumped on the opportunity to use digital farming when he heard experiments at the Queensland Agricultural and Fisheries Gatton Research Institute.
Kalfresh operates properties in Stanthorpe, Kalbar and Gatton in the southeast corner of Queensland and North Botton, providing products to customers throughout the year.
The business operates on 1619 hectares of carrots, green beans, sweet corn and pumpkin programs.
Kalfresh started on the path to organic production seven years ago and is now growing green beans, sweet corn, pumpkin, snack capsules, snack tomatoes and small melons in a 202ha certified organic country.
Mr Gorman said weed control was an integral part of organic farming and hoped it would change the game of digital farming.
He says there are many competitions and machines in robotics around the world, but they have chosen to use Australian products.
He said local support was another positive factor and he was looking forward to working with Agris and FF.
“They are now trained on the empty ground where we sow,” said Mr. Gorman.
As soon as we have a crop, it starts to follow, and then we go to the weeds.
We hope to make great strides this summer.
Queensland Agriculture Minister Mark Funner said the sky’s the limit on such technology.
Due to the current drought, with COVID-19, there is a shortage of ag workers in the country, he said.
It will be a game changer for agriculture and this is why it is so important to cooperate with Kalfresh.
Mr Gorman said the main driving force behind the transition to organic was the opportunity to enter high-value products.
“We have learned a lot about agriculture and the functioning of our natural systems,” he said.
So we have transferred that much of our knowledge to our normal development, with little water use, little chemical use, little fertilizer use, carbon conservation, and weeding to restore our land.
For someone who has been in agriculture for 30 years, it rekindles your joy in farming, so that was a good way for us.
Start the day with all the big news in agriculture! Sign up below to receive our daily FarmOnline newsletter.
The robotic revolution that is taking place across Australia first appeared on the farm line.