The Center for Digital Agriculture (CDA) was initiated one year ago with a $2 million investment from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), writes Elizabeth Leake at Datanami. Its official kick-off was held back-to-back with the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) Industry Conference, October 7-10, 2019.
The Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the United Nations’ 2018 report was titled, “The state of food insecurity and nutrition in the world; building climate resilience for food security and nutrition.” In this report, FAO states that climate shocks were one of the leading reasons for food insecurity in 2017; one out of every nine people around the world — or 821 million — were undernourished. Despite improvements in overall global health and wealth, due to population growth and climatic events in certain regions, the number who suffer from malnutrition has increased to levels of a decade ago. Such events triggered crop failure, social instability, mass migrations and conflict.
According to CDA Co-Director Matthew Hudson (College of Agriculture, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES); Crop Science), Illinois formed CDA to foster innovation and discovery that will “help agricultural producers, researchers, and industries keep pace with the ways technology is transforming how we feed and support a growing population.”