A Scottish precision farming company has launched a new tool to help potato growers predict crop yield and tuber size.
Tuberzone, from SoilEssentials Ltd, based in Brechin, is said to cleverly track and predict crop yield and tuber size throughout the growing season to help farmers calculate the best time for dessication and in turn, maximise the peak value of seed and salad crops.
The tool, which will be shown at the BP2019 potato industry event in Harrogate next week, uses GPS, drone and satellite imagery and other remote sensing tools to predict crop yield and size distribution.
“Tuberzone is a precision farming solution which can not only cut costs, optimise saleable yield and improve resource use efficiency, it is also a whole season process aimed at helping growers, merchants, processors and retailers fulfil market requirements,” said SoilEssentials managing director, Jim Wilson.
“I believe Tuberzone is the perfect tool for growers who wish to increase financial yields more than physical ones, reduce food waste and have more control of their crop management. Tuberzone can greatly reduce the number of crop digs required, saving the grower time and money, allowing better crop management and making it easier to meet contract targets.”
Mr Wilson said Tuberzone was developed following a three-year project with McCain and Grimme.
The tool is being further trialled in a project with farmers’ co-operative Grampian Growers and SAC Consulting.
He added: “We are proud of our track record for vigorously proving the benefits of Tuberzone in real cropping situations. This gives me the confidence to bring Tuberzone on to the market, with potentially huge benefits for commercial growers.”