Determine the grain quality on the spot
Is there a way for a farmer to improve this situation? That is the aim of GrainSense, the pocket laboratory devised by Ralf Marbach. This optics specialist, the former Senior Scientist at VTT (the Finnish equivalent of the French National Centre for Scientific Research, CNRS) has devised an instrument capable of using infra-red waves to analyse the composition of a grain in just a few seconds. It shows its protein, oil and carbohydrate content, as well as its moisture content.
With the instrument in his hand "a few weeks before harvest, when the ears are beginning to open, a farmer will be able to go into his field and distinguish the plots, where the quality is poor from those, which it is worthwhile to enrich to bring them into the higher category," explains Edvard Krogius, CEO of GrainSense. "Even at the time of harvest, sorting the grains into homogeneous stock will be made easier, without having to wait weeks after the grain has dried, as is currently the case, to obtain results from laboratories."
The instrument offers the cereal farmer the opportunity to benefit from the global capacity to stock big data. "All the analyses will be saved in the cloud," states Edvard Krogius. "The farmer will be able, harvest after harvest, to monitor his own personally owned results and will have access to anonymised grain data offered through the cloud service." The machine, tested on some twenty farms, will be officially launched at the Agritechnica Agricultural Show in Hanover in November 2017.
This is a free translation of the French article in Le Monde October 25 on the article about the Hello Tomorrow event in Paris.
Handheld scanner divines how nutritious your food really is
Farmers can now zap their crops with a handheld scanner to instantly determine nutritional content, which could prove crucial in mitigating the effects of climate change on food quality. It also brings similar consumer gadgets a step closer – so we can find out what is in our food for ourselves.
Helping farmers through science
Today’s farmers need to make a lot of complicated decisions, and often without proper information. They may have many years of experience with inherited best practices, a solid network of neighbouring farmers to test the latest ideas with, and a developed instinct for necessary actions, but often this is not enough on which to base decision making that will instantly affect the outcome of their operations.
"Grainsense brings great opportunity"
I am a grain and oilseed farmer and a contractor using precision farming technology in nitrogen application. In my view Grainsense brings great opportunity to adjust nitrogen application to reach target protein levels with less input. In the future measuring green kernels before application will help to adjust nitrogen levels before harvest.
"I see valuable use in GrainSense"
Being responsible for our farms operations, encompassing 1.500 hectares and up to 10 employees, I see valuable use in GrainSense. On top of our own laboratory measurement equipment that we have used for years now, I see clear benefits in using GrainSense in our daily operations. Getting instantly a more accurate insight in our produce and outcome.