Free data farming taking off

Data Farming precision agriculture company growing exponentially


Machinery
FARMING DATA: Data Farming, managing director, Tim Neale was one of the many agtech enthusiasts who attended the AgriFutures EvokeAg conference.

FARMING DATA: Data Farming, managing director, Tim Neale was one of the many agtech enthusiasts who attended the AgriFutures EvokeAg conference.

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Data Farming precision agriculture company growing exponentially

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A precision farming company is on a mission to put satellite imagery in the palm of your hand, for free. 

Data Farming, managing director, Tim Neale said his company is trying to turn speciality data services from a boutique application to a mainstream agronomy tool. 

"The adoption rates of precision agriculture in Australia have been pretty ordinary for some technologies, auto-steer obviously has had great uptake, but other technology like variable rate or satellite imagery have been very poor," he said. 

We are trying to take precision agriculture tools and embed them into peoples daily work activities - Tim Neale

"We are trying to take precision agriculture tools and embed them into peoples daily work activities. 

"Agronomists are our primary market, but we also have a lot of farmers using our software."

Mr Neale said since its formation eighteen months ago, Data Farming had gone through a rapid expansion. 

"We have about 8000 farms logged in the system now and are growing exponentially."

Mr Neale said the company utilised satellite imagery from the European Space Agency at ten metre resolution for its service.  

"We are providing satellite data to anyone in the world, every five days, for free, we have processed about 4.5 million hectares of NDVI data," he said. 

Mr Neale said the data was being used in a variety of ways to add value on farm. 

"The feedback we have been getting from agronomists is it saves them a lot of valuable time crop checking," he said. 

"The ability to find problem areas, or to make desiccation decisions quicker.

"Last year was a bad year for frost, the agronomists were able to find frost affected areas from the imagery and make decisions on whether to cut for hay, we had agronomists making $100,000 decisions based on imagery rather than spending time trying to find where the frost affected areas were."

Mr Neale said using imagery allowed agronomists to make quantitative decisions with more confidence. 

"We haven't had the ability to get satellite imagery in the palm of peoples hands, out in the paddock, up until now," he said. 

"I think that is the key thing, having the data in the hands of the people making decisions."

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