The National Centre for Precision Farming - Digital Agri-Food and Horticulture Special Interest Group | Harper Adams University
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Digital Agri-Food and Horticulture Special Interest Group

A forum and collective voice for organisations and associations to influence and promote education, policy, investment and R&D

The Digital Agri-Food and Horticulture Special Interest Group is a membership group focused on increasing the national and global awareness in regards to the use of big data and internet of things (IoT) technologies in agriculture. It is a platform for promoting and celebrating innovation, products and services to help the farming community reach optimal levels of production.

This group provides a forum for organisations and associations to collectively address issues concerning the adoption and development of data and associated systems and pre-competitive collaboration. Its members provide a collective voice on issues concerning the use and development of ethical, privacy, security and technical standards. Our aim is to influence education, policy, investment, research and development alongside organising and delivering awareness and training events.

“Being involved in the SIG has been of great benefit to us as a startup trying to establish a business and network in the UK. Bringing together established companies and experience with new ideas and technologies helps to accelerate adoption of these new technologies and encourage innovation in the industry. Groups like this enable you to focus your message, understanding that the audience is already on the same page as you and actively looking for ways to utilise the technology that you can provide. I have found everyone involved to be very open minded and eager to explore how we can work together.”

Steve Archer - 30MHz

Big Data

Directed at understanding and exploiting the Big Data approach to handling very large data sets as a means of deriving associations intractable in small data analyses. The approach seeks to integrate data from different sources and at various levels, from commodity markets for price volatility predictions to real-time weather, soil and air quality, and equipment usage for smarter decision support. Such an approach requires less, but complementary dependence on the strictures of the causality-focused standard scientific method, instead utilising vast quantities of data to achieve by-proxy correlations that help predict the future. In essence this is what is now termed “Big Data Analytics” and has the potential to catalyse a new revolution in agricultural production, presenting unprecedented opportunities for identifying associations between information and knowledge entities, often faster and with greater temporal significance than conventional small data analytics.

Internet of Things (IOT)

In association with IAgrE, the IoT Special Interest Group intends to bring IoT systems, hardware, software and service providers together, with farming stakeholders to develop new IoT-related products and services that will benefit the food and farming supply chain. The group aims to identify technology-related opportunities to increase farm productivity and then take appropriate steps to develop innovative products and services. The group will also consider improvements to the key elements of the IoT technology stack, thus paving the way for future developments in the IoT and next generation IoT-related products and services. It is envisaged that the IoT group will link with members of the Big Data Special Interest Group to consider data management opportunities.

Contact us

Debbie Heeks - General enquiries
Telephone: +44(0)1952 815184

Dr Richard Green
Telephone: +44 (0)1952 815268


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