All around the world cattle farmers engage in a form of agriculture called Extensive Farming, a method that uses almost no fences and is characterized by great freedom of movement for animals on large areas of land, generally resulting in a high level of animal wellbeing. For farmers however, this means long searches for cattle, not knowing when calves are born and vulnerability to theft. The yields of extensive farming are surprisingly high per unit of labour, but fluctuate because of these significant inefficiencies.
Developed economies are investing heavily in smart farming solutions, such as IoT, to improve their farms’ productivity and effectivity. Developing economies, however, stay behind due to lacking technical expertise and capital to invest. According to the World Economic Forum this results in a risk of growing inequality between farmers in developed and developing economies.
TES was approached by the owner of Samudra Farm in Bolivia, where she experiences this problem firsthand. Solutions for cattle localisation and identification do exist but are technically unsuited for the Bolivian landscape and too expensive for smallholder farmers.
We soon fell in love with this challenge and saw the amazing opportunity to enable smallholder farmers in developing economies around the world to compete with global markets through affordable smart farming.