How Can IoT, Smart Farming Actually Help Our Farmers?

"Technology (IoT, ICT, AI) based solutions stand to revolutionize the way we farm; the impact of data driven farming on the farmer is one that transcends generations.” - Krishna Kumar, CEO of CropIn Technologies

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With the Internet of Things (IoT) penetrating sectors that were not too long ago considered unreachable, in the Indian scheme of things, it is only imminent that smart concepts are applied to even rural India where there is plenty of data generated but with less solutions implemented. Now, with this being the scenario, smart concepts have in fact been deployed in agriculture to help farmers in conserving valuable energy and focusing their strengths on harvesting better. With IoT-driven smart agro solutions being the focal point, we take a look at Milktrak and Smartfarm, two solutions that help farmers conserve valuable time, by mitigating plaguing issues.

MilkTrak milk meter

It automatically tracks both the milk and the cow/buffalo in India.

Deployer: Bangalore-based StellApps Technologies

MilkTrak milk meters

Usefulness of this solution

Primarily, MilkTrak presents an overall picture of the health of a cow, by analysing various aspects such as Yield, Temperature, and Conductivity of the milk obtained (from the cow).

This information is generated through multiple sensors embedded within the milk meter that transmit this data to a centralized cloud through a M2M wireless gateway.

A graphical representation of how MilkTrak works

What happens after the above information reaches the cloud

Once in the cloud, various cloud-based applications execute analytics and present the overall information consisting of a detailed report about the current health of the cow. This includes diagnosis at an elementary level as well so that farmers can detect early signs of diseases and get the cow treated.

Now, remember that milk from a healthy cow always triumphs milk obtained from that of even a minorly ill cow/buffalo.

After performing analytics at the cloud level, MilkTrak automatically transmits vital details such as quality of milk, a detailed report on this, along with the health of the cow/buffalo to end users. End users here refer to farmers, veterinarians, and engineers working towards building IoT-driven agro solutions.

This system potentially serves as health monitors of cows/buffaloes to directly increase the milk yield. Farmers and dairy owners can potentially save valuable time here as the entire process is automated whilst reaching the right end users and service providers. The total cost involved here also drastically reduces.

“300 million bovines are reared across 75 million farms in the Indian dairy sector, of which 1/3 rd are buffaloes.”, states Ranjith Mukundan CEO and Co-Founder of StellApps Technologies – developers of MilkTrak.

How is MilkTrak used?

According to Ranjith, MilkTrak can be used by incorporating within any of the readily available Automatic Milking Systems.

MilkTrak milk meter can also be fixed onto the smaller Bucket Milking Systems as well; these are more common, than the Automatic Milking Systems, due to their cost factor.

Where has MilkTrak been deployed ?

As per Ranjith of StellApps, MilkTrak has currently been deployed in various farms in India, expanding to regions such as Nepal and Kenya. MilkTrak also belongs to a suite of IoT-driven agro apps developed by StellApps, called SmartMoo.

We figured that if we can use Sensors in the farms to automatically acquire data and apply analytics and machine learning on the cloud and then use the outcome of the analytics and machine learning – we could solve critical issues.”, stated Ranjith of StellApps.

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