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Syngenta acquires high-resolution satellite imagery innovator


Syngenta now has the opportunity to see things differently — and wonderfully.

During the National Farm Machinery Show in Louisville, the company revealed that it has acquired North Carolina-based FarmShots Inc., an innovator of high-resolution satellite imagery that detects plant health by analyzing absorbed light from field images. The app, which helps pinpoint disease or pest problems, is available on Android or Apple platforms and is built to run on laptops, tablets, or smartphones.

With integration into Syngenta’s AgriEdge Excelsior data management system, the cloud-based FarmShots platform will decrease the amount of time spent scouting and will reduce the amount of product needed to address the issues in the field.

“It’ll let you go out into the field to see exactly where the problem is, take a note, and then write a prescription for it,” said Josh Miller, FarmShots’ founder and now a Syngenta employee.

Image courtesy of FarmShots Inc.

FarmShots is currently used on millions of acres globally, with most farms at 500 acres or larger. 

“We’re helping farmers be more profitable, and the data and digital capabilities are helping that. The goal is to use the right amount of products at the right place in the right time. In using programs like this and by having AgriEdge Excelsior, everything plays into that. They get greater yields without needing more land,” said Syngenta’s Paul Minehart.

While it’s primarily corn and soybean farmers who have adopted FarmShots for their fields, the platform is also applicable to other crops such as apple orchards or even cattle operations, where optimal grazing opportunities are identified.

In January, John Deere honored FarmShots as its Dealer’s Choice for Innovation, noting the system is “realizing for users the reduction in time and effort to target field scouting activities, better manage (and many times reduce) fertilizer usage, and provide visual tools both in the field and in the office.”

Miller launched FarmShots about four years ago, and has constantly used customer feedback to improve the platform. Not even letting little things go overlooked, FarmShots even has customizable color scales that can be implemented for people who are colorblind. So even if you can’t see the traditional green=good/red=bad motif, you’ll be able to see your field health clearly.

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