Posted 14 Nov 2023
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Delegation returns from Harvesting Tomorrow: Hort Automation Market Immersion
Posted Tue 10 October
A Callaghan Innovation delegation of New Zealand agritech companies, growers, researchers and industry partners has returned back from a two-week market immersion to America’s West Coast capped off with attendance at the 2023 FIRA event.
The focus for this market immersion trip was on automation in horticulture, from the field or orchard all the way through the supply chain. The group travelled through Washington, Oregon and California, meeting with experts and touring berry farms, leafy green producers, and pipfruit orchards.
Callaghan Innovation's Project Lead, Andrew Cameron, said it was incredibly useful for the New Zealander companies to understand the differences in the US market, and how they might approach them.
What might surprise some people – and what definitely surprised some of us – is that while the scale of industry in the States is massive, adoption of technology on-farm isn’t as far ahead of us as we thought.
– Andrew Cameron, Callaghan Innovation
The delegation came to better understand the pathways to technology adoption experienced by growers, and their preferences for companies setting up close to their operations, allowing faster iterations when developing solutions, as well as supply hands-on troubleshooting if needed.