Authors: Tod D, Williams R, Johnstone P


Publisher: Zenodo 




The digital revolution refers to changes sweeping the consumer goods and services sector made possible by advances in cheap, fast and reliable data acquisition and processing, sophisticated analytics, cloud computing services, wireless technologies, the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence. These offer the opportunity for a wide range of businesses to improve their operational effectiveness, and they have enabled the creation of a number of disruptive business models, e.g. Uber and Airbnb.

We asked: How might New Zealand’s horticultural value chains be transformed or disrupted by the digital revolution? We then considered the technology platforms that would be necessary to enable this transformation. The technology platforms we identified are: sensor networks and connectivity; agri-food value chain informatics (including consumer insights); cloud computing service models; and cyberphysical systems (robotics). In addition, we need to consider social licence to operate.

The interdisciplinary development and integration of these platforms is an evolution of the precision farming concept (driving efficiency in largely agricultural commodity production systems), with added applicability to the whole value chain. We call this ‘Smart & Connected AgriFood’.

This article is published under license Creative Commons Attribution 4.0


Illustration Photo: A handheld GPS device, which is one of the central technologies in a new CIAT project on site-specific agriculture. The Colombia-based initiative will collect, process and aggregate information on the planting decisions of hundreds of the country's fruit farmers to help them make the best choices. (credits: Neil Palmer (CIAT) / Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0))


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