News and Success Stories

Published 18 September 2023

Fruitminder: Beta Access

Over 70 growers gathered in Central Otago last month to learn about agritech and innovation at Forest Lodge Orchard, New Zealand’s first commercial food grower producing zero fossil fuels.

The open day, organised by CEO of Fruitminder Sebastian Chapman, was a chance for local growers to see Fruitminders unique GPS ID system and camera technologies in action.

Fruitminder essentially builds a digital twin of the orchard and provides real-time data so growers can give specialist care to each plant. Every tree is identified with its own virtual GPS tag, and when scanned on the Fruitminder app, the tree's growing conditions and treatments used are readily available. 
Imagine sending out your autonomous robot, loaded with the UC-Vision camera system, getting a notification saying there are aphids on several trees, having the GPS coordinates of those exact trees packaged up as tasks ready to assign to a worker, and the ability to track the spray applied all in the same platform? That's Fruitminder.

“It takes all the guesswork out of it. You don't have to inspect every tree, we can manage the orchard by blocks, rows or management areas,” says Chapman. “And when you do need it - we can drill down to the individual tree - providing more flexibility than ever available before!”

The platform allows orchardists and their employees to enter logs to track general info or tasks that can be assigned to employees. Once integrated with the University of Canterbury computer vision (UCVision) scanning system we will be able to automate the relevant task creation.

“The aim is to get a better fruit yield consistently for growers, so we can increase the value of the tree while also adding labour efficiency.”

The tech is already being used by growers across the country including Cherry Orchard, Forest Lodge. At last months’ open day, growers got to see the automation of the entire growing process from the shed through to the field. 

“We propped the UCVision camera bar on top of a Monarch tractor so it could capture images out in the orchard, and then we showed how the data collected feeds into the Fruitminder app to allow growers to monitor the orchard at a macro level and each tree at a micro level.”

CEO of Fruitminder, Sebastian Chapman at Fruitminder Open Day Event.CEO of Fruitminder, Sebastian Chapman at Fruitminder Open Day Event.

He says the aim is to have Fruitminder technology used widely across NZ, and to eventually break into the international market. 

“Although there is similar data collection technology available overseas, they don't deliver the accuracy growers need or provide a solution that is as multifaceted as Fruitminder.”

Now, Chapman is heading across the country to showcase its true capability when paired with other agriculture technologies such as electric autonomous vehicles.

Read more about Fruitminder here: