Over the last few decades technology in agriculture has been growing and developing. Modern farmers and agricultural operators are developing new technologies and innovations each day to increase production and productivity. One of the latest trends developing today is the introduction of DRONE technology.
Isn’t it interesting to see how this toy looking gadget could make a positive input into agriculture? Technology and innovation has no limits to shape, size, form or fashion,which is quite intriguing to me.
So what is a DRONE? How does this associate or affect agriculture. Some people may know drones as a flying machine used in the military as a weapon of warfare. Others may know it as an aerial craft with multiple cameras.
In the agri world world the drone we speak of is the aerial craft or unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) with high resolution detailed imagery, thermal imaging and multi spectral cameras. the agriculture(more…)
Finally Tech4Agri made it to Tobago, the sister isle of Trinidad. A visit has been in the works for quite some time. However we decided to make the sacrifice..financially…to get there and do as much as we can…. and it paid off.
We covered the #Tobago #Bluefoodfestival and it exceeded expectations!
A unique food festival
Blue food refers to roots and tubers primarily Dasheen (Taro) which when cooked has a bluish type of color.
Other roots include cassava, sweet potato, eddoes and yam which can be grouped with dumplings, plantains or fig (the latter are related crops, the first being ripe and the second green)
These items are all collectively referred to as ‘provision’ then topped with meats of all varieties, particularly ‘wild meat’
Wild meat refers to just that, meats which are not farmed but caught in the wild.
These include hog, conchs (a type of shell fish), iguana, mat (a type of lizard which we learned is called ‘sally’ in Tobago) as well as common ones such as pork,duck, rabbit and chicken.
Not only are meats on the menu but you would find a wide variety of extremely innovative products.
Ever heard of garlic wine? How about sweet potato wine, dasheen ketchup/pepper sauce or avocado ice cream ? For those of you readers who live outside the Caribbean, I’m not joking. I ate a lizard leg and it was delicious!
Do you engage with your fellow agriyouth? Do you work together? Support, motivate or collaborate with those in your field? If not you definitely should be!
The video below show a great example of such engagement…
So let’s recap. In the video above, we saw ICTs being used to record the experiment, mechanical technology, transportation capabilities of the vehicle not to mention the communication, knowledge and experiences being shared among these agri-stakholders.
Hope you saw what I saw 😀
Speaking seriously, this video, though quite fun and entertaining, came about via the aforementioned engagement with fellow agriyouth.
The widely know app, allows instant communication. There has been such an exchange among the group of agripreneurs over the last few months, that has been nothing short of motivating and in full support of the activities of all participants.
It has led to healthy business conducted among participants but being youth oriented, the occasional joke or video is posted in the group.
The video you watched of above is of such media that sometimes comes from the group.
I was so interested. Not just for the fun of that vehicle going through the farm but its actual applications for transporting crops throughout the planting or harvesting processes.
Everyday more and more agribusinesses are being birthed online via social media and other ICT applications. Tech4Agri itself is an example of this with our businesses provide support services in media and content production.
A report by the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI), supported by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), highlights the uptake and use of ICTs in value chains in the Caribbean. Mobile applications, drones, marketing platforms, extension services, and databases are just some of the many ways ICTs are being applied in the region for private businesses and some institutions.
So whats new?
You should know by now that people ‘eat with their eyes’ As a result the foodie culture has all but taken over social media with hundreds of businesses using picture and video based social media to build an audience, grow clientele and see their business flourish.
‘Eat ah Food’ is an example of such. It’s about a celebration of food from the Trinbagonian perspective, highlighting the food and beverages we have to offer, as well as all the ingredients that bring them to the table.
Similar to this business is the series ‘Foodie nation’whichpromotes the Caribbean basin using the universal language of food.
These businesses are partnering with others on media projects and the like to meet the demand for recipes/trends in the foodie market. There’s always room for new types of flavors, tastes and foods.
More on the communicative side of things are recently launched websites;
‘Farming Is In’ an online agricultural directory and resource center armed with special tools, designed to promote agricultural produce, educate farmers and the general public on everything agricultural.
‘Caribbean Agribusiness’ which seeks to create a one-stop website where all stakeholders can contribute content and share ideas to promote the development of the sector thus resulting in greater food security, enhanced intra and extra regional trade and increased foreign exchange earnings for the region.
Both are focused on business to business activity, aimed at linking farmers directly to their needed market, cutting out the middleman and giving them back profits at the farm gate as well as decision making power. This is finally happening in the region on a regular basis.
These types of stakeholders – small to medium agribusinesses, start ups as well as other private entities are finding their own way to make themselves sustainable,sharing knowledge and facilitating their own growth through ICTs. The uptake has been slow but it has never stopped. Kudos to these businesses and the few institutions for their efforts as their actions move the agri-sector forward.
Near the end of October the region will see a return of the Caribbean Week of Agriculture. (CWA) The big question is will it be another reunion of agricultural stakeholders?
The answer: yes, it will.
Fortunately through various activities Tech4agri has been able to attend three of the past CWA events. And we have realized something. CWA is the place to reconnect with agri stakeholders across the region.
Persons with whom you may have worked with in the past, done business with or even gone to school with are likely to be there. Those in particular who have been dedicated to agriculture not only in their countries but also at the national level and through regional initiatives view CWA has the opportunity progress towards greater regional development.
Tech4agri is truly experiencing growth, slowly but surely! This week we have yet a another new contributor to our blog from team member Krystle. This would be her first time blogging having been a part of our social media training held a couple months ago. Her assignment: The Thought for Food Challenge.
As an ambassador to this great initiative we gave Krystle information concerning the competition and asked her to write her thoughts on it. She wrote:
Our feature this week is geared towards University level, agripreneurs and innovators. having read my fellow team member Robert’s post earlier, I felt his opening was of great importance. He said:
“As the human population on the planet grows our demand for resources continue grow with them. However growth on the scale that our species has experienced in the 20th Century and into the 21st century is not sustainable and we are rapidly approaching our planets carrying capacity using modern agricultural practices which have been proven to be unsustainable.” – Robert, Blogger & Country Rep (USA) @ Tech4Agri
Stemming from this, we understand that as populations continue to grow, the carrying capacity of that environment increases, thus the need for more resources.
Our unhealthy practices of the past has left an enormous trace of inefficiency and unsuitability.
Therefore, the development of new technologies and sustainable innovations to revolutionize agriculture and minimize the gap initiated by our inefficiency is essential to provide nutritious food to our growing global population and help solve the problem of wastage.
As an up and coming agripreneur and also as a new member of the Tech4Agri team, you often find yourself with ideas, goals or just thoughts on how to turn or change the world of food and agriculture.
How can brilliant and passionate minds like ourselves who care about food and agriculture come together to help make a difference and experience the creative power of leaders in the industry? How can we bridge the gap between innovators and investors?
THOUGHT FOR FOOD aka TFF is a global movement of innovators dedicated to finding the answer to the biggest question facing our generation:“How to feed 9+ billion people by 2050?”
We feature our fellow team member Mitchel Jno Charles. He is the creator and editor of the Agrosuede Backyard Gardening video blog. Housed on Youtube we reached out to Mitchel after seeing his impressive work, seeking to collaborate.
Since then his work has improved as Tech4agri shared its knowledge on #mobile #journalism. If one takes a look at his videos from its early days to present you can clearly see his passion and dedication.
Agrosuede is a leader in “How to” for Caribbean agriculture with over 2000 subscribers on his channel and 179 videos.
Recently Mitchel entered a regional competition entitled “Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA): Stories from farmers in the Eastern Caribbean States, organised by the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), we recently organised
Unfortunately Mitchel was not winner but he had this to say:
Mitchel has also entered the Film4Climate competition: meant to have filmmakers, videographers and activists explain what does climate change mean to them, what are they doing to solve the climate challenge and to deliver a climate message to the world. Entries are still open!
Our #startup is offering advertising & sponsorship space for our #webseries which airs on the Trinidad & tobago TV channel – SynergyTV. As you know, the series features stories in #tech#innovation & successes in #agriculture. It is made using #mobile#journalism (devices and apps)
As this station airs in other #caribbean islands we are open to regional & international business.
Also because the series has a short run time it is aired 26 times per week! This means placing an ad with us means superb exposure.
Collaborate with us.
Check our website to learn more about us and our services. See below our ad & sponsorship packages below and above a short promo for the series. Inquire about our other services in social media consultancy, social video production and mobile journalism training.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call +1868 297 5378
We continue with the conclusion to our first guest blogger, Robert Davis, Tech4agri Team member. His last question…Do we need land to grow crops?
The answer may not be as obvious as you think. A group in New York City has come up with a novel solution to the arable land question. The project known as Swale which is half public art project and half tourist destination is a floating food forest built onto a 100 X 30ft barge in the middle of the Hudson River.
The barge was launched in June of 2016 and will dock at six ports along the Hudson River, including Governors Island, Yankee Pier, and Brooklyn Bridge Park, spending at least one month in each.
The goal is of the project is to branch out and reach more communities. Mary Mattingly, one of its organizers explains that “On land, we would have been more localized, working in one area with one community… but because we can travel, we can reach a lot more people and generate a lot more excitement.”
“As the human population on the planet grows our demand for resources continue grow with them. However growth on the scale that our species has experienced in the 20th Century and into the 21st century is not sustainable and we are rapidly approaching our planets carrying capacity using modern agricultural practices which have been proven to be unsustainable.” – Robert Davis, Blogger, country Rep (USA) & team member @ Tech4Agri
This week we feature the thoughts of team member and country representative for the USA, Robert Davis. You met him on our Instagram page. Rob hails from Texas, in the USA and has quite the impressive academic background in experimental archaeology involving agricultural methods.
He also has experience in environmental management & sustainable development. As a blogger he expressed interest in Tech4agri on his own accord and felt that he could contribute every so often.
For Tech4agri this is another milestone as in the past five years we never had a writer specifically for our blog other than its creator. We’re happy to have rob with us!
“Robert’s writing style is a bit different from my own however that is sort of the point of a blog. To each his own opinion and style. In any case I think he did a great job!” – Keron, creator and editor, Tech4agri.com
I remember witnessing the effect of such a situation on the savannah grasslands at the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro first hand during the summer of 2006 when I was attending a field school near the Amboseli National Reserve in Kenya.