Last month I made a trip to Hanover, Germany, to experience first hand the world’s leading trade fair for agricultural machinery — Agritechnica 2019. I have visited many agricultural fairs in the past, but I was so impressed with the grandeur of Agritechnica. The incredible size and potential of the agricultural equipment sector was on full display, with countless brands of machines and implements.
For three days I visited 27 pavilions at the event, which had nearly 460,000 visitors and more than 2,800 exhibitors from 50-plus countries. Perhaps the most visited stand was John Deere, which for the first time at Agritechnica displayed its autonomous concept tractor, as well as drones for aerial application. From my perspective, it is very interesting to see that companies like John Deere are betting that autonomous equipment like this will be in use in various parts of the world in the near future. In Brazil, we do not have an agricultural market that truly understands this autonomous vehicle topic very well, but I believe that this will change soon.
At the fair, several companies and universities presented agricultural robots and prototypes of autonomous machines for various segments. One piece of equipment that caught my attention was an automated soil collector from Wintex Agro. The WINTEX 3000 is characterized by the fact that it can take soil samples from different layers in the same operation. Based in Europe, Wintex Agro is also present in countries all over the world, including the U.S., Canada, Russia, and Australia.
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Case IH is offering five AGXTEND products, which cover a range of technologies. These include:
- CropXplorer. A biomass sensing package that analyzes actual plant conditions to subsequently calibrate the application of fertilizer.
- SoilXplorer. Real-time soil sensing systems that automatically adjust implement working depth parameters to deliver uniform tillage performance.
- NIRXact. Highly accurate near infrared (NIR) and sensing systems that provide real-time crop data to enable selection of the most efficient machine operating parameters.
- Xpower. Zero-chemical weed control, through the use of electro-herbicide technology.
- FarmXtend. A range of real-time weather sensors data to facilitate informed agronomic decision making.
Another brand that had a lot of traffic in its stand was xarvio, BASF’s digital farming solution. The current xarvio portfolio is based on two main products – xarvio Scouting and xarvio Field Manager – and is available in more than 100 countries and 30 languages.
In Brazil, I’m already a user of xarvio Scouting, mostly for automatic identification of weeds. According to BASF, many European ag professionals are taking advantage of the other xarvio Scouting features, such as yellow trap analysis, nitrogen recommendation, leaf damage detection, radar, and notifications. It is amazing to see how farmers worldwide have so many different service options and platforms like Xarvio that can assist them in agricultural production.
For those who want to attend the next edition of Agritechnica, it will be in 2021 in Germany. There will also be an edition for the Asian market, Agritechnica Asia, held in May 2020 in Bangkok, Thailand.