AgriTech Demo Farm Open Evening
The ONE Agritech Programme is led and funded by Opportunity North East (ONE) with support from Scotland Food & Drink's sector recovery plan and delivered by SAOS and SAC Consulting. The project will demonstrate and validate the benefits and practical application of smart agritech farming to farmers to improve the productivity, sustainability and profitability of farms.
The three-year project has already selected the two Agritech Focus Farms to demonstrate tech:
- Tulloch Farms, Fordoun, Laurencekirk, managed by Ruari MacWilliam – primarily an intensive arable business.
- Titaboutie Farm, Tarland, managed by father and son team Andrew and Daniel Robertson – an upland livestock farm.
One of the main activities in the project is to install, test and monitor a range of agritech solutions on the Agritech Focus Farms. Although the primary focus is engaging with the farming community, it is important others in the supply chain (the trade, processers, end users) are also involved to exploit the benefits from closer collaboration, particularly improving information sharing, to drive out waste and improve efficiency.
Jim Booth, SAOS, the project lead commented “We are all aware of the challenges facing the industry, issues such as: improving productivity, meeting climate change targets, improving environmental management, dealing with a shrinking labour force, and the lack of profitability – the application of agritech has real potential to make a difference and help farmers address these challenges. However, the main barriers to the application of new agritech are the low levels of awareness of what is out there, the cost of implementing new technology, and uncertainty over the value and benefit of new technology. We know it is difficult for farmers to keep abreast of new developments. It can be daunting knowing where to start and where to source trusted, independent information /advice. This is one of the advantages of following two real family farms on their journey as they trial new technology and their experiences.”
Open farm events allow the wider farming community and anyone with an interest in agritech to visit the AgriTech Focus Farms, to learn about their enterprise mix, farming system, current technology use and future plans.