Conference brings together next generation of tech game-changers

Conference brings together next generation of tech game-changers

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NEXT STEP: A piece of AgTech being demonstrated at the Loxton smart farm launch in 2020. Photo: JANNETTE FULHAM

NEXT STEP: A piece of AgTech being demonstrated at the Loxton smart farm launch in 2020. Photo: JANNETTE FULHAM

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Self-driving vehicles and micro-drones that sow, spray and harvest crops are set to be among a wide range of cutting-edge agricultural technology on show at AdvanceAg 2021.

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Self-driving vehicles and micro-drones that sow, spray and harvest crops are set to be among a wide range of cutting-edge agricultural technology on show at AdvanceAg 2021.

The South Australian AgTech conference is concentrating on showcasing affordable technology solutions farmers can adopt in 2021.

SA AgTech Advisory Group independent chair Leanna Read said organisers anticipated this year's July 23 event to build on last year's success.

"There are many AgTech events across Australia that demonstrate 'blue sky' technology, but the aim of AdvanceAg is to showcase affordable technology solutions to farmers they can readily adopt," she said.

"Not only will we have keynote speakers, but we will have breakout sessions focused on a number of industries and technologies."

The COVID-19 lockdowns of the past year made the adoption of AgTech products slow-going and challenging for farmers, meaning this year's conference is vital in reinvigorating uptake.

Primary Industries and Regional Development Minister David Basham said the 2021 event will help reignite the adoption of agricultural technology.

"Removing barriers to adoption is a priority," he said.

"AdvanceAg 2021 provides a platform for farmers and technology providers and everyone in between to collaborate."

Mr Basham said increasing the uptake of farm-based technology could return up to $2.6 billion per annum to the South Australian economy through increasing productivity, cutting on-farm costs and creating more sustainable practices.

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Associate Director for AgTech at BDO, Michael Macolino said the South Australian AgTech industry provides the farming sector with an opportunity to do more with less.

"Profitability, sustainability and increasing yields are really the core value propositions that AgTech brings to South Australian farmers," he said.

"However, AgTech must align to the requirements of the market and farming practices to achieve these outcomes."

Speakers for AdvanceAg 2021 are yet to be announced, but are expected to include some of the brightest minds in the AgTech industry, with the likes of Darren Thomas, CEO of Thomas Foods International, headlining last year's event.

AdvanceAg will also provide attendees with a chance to network and explore a range of exhibitions at the Adelaide Convention Centre.

This article was originally published on The Lead.

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