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IBM Cloud Technology Helps Agriculture Industry Improve the World's Food and Crop Supp

Global expansion of IBM Watson Decision Platform for Agriculture taps AI, weather and IoT data so growers, food companies and agribusiness can boost production


ARMONK, N.Y., May 22, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced the global expansion of Watson Decision Platform for Agriculture, with AI technology tailored for new crops and specific regions to help feed a growing population. For the first time, IBM is providing a global agriculture solution that combines predictive technology with data from The Weather Company, an IBM Business, and IoT data to help give farmers around the world greater insights about planning, plowing, planting, spraying and harvesting.


By 2050, the world will need to feed two billion more people without an increase of arable land1. IBM is combining power weather data – including historical, current and forecast data and weather prediction models from The Weather Company – with crop models to help improve yield forecast accuracy, generate value, and increase both farm production and profitability.

"As a farmer, the wild card is always weather. IBM overlays weather details with my own data and historical information to help me apply, verify, and make decisions," said Roric Paulman, owner/operator of Paulman Farms in Southwest Nebraska. "For example, our farm is in a highly restricted water basin, so the ability to better anticipate rain not only saves me money but also helps me save precious natural resources."

New crop models include corn, wheat, soy, cotton, sorghum, barley, sugar cane and potato, with more coming soon. These models will now be available in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and Brazil, as well as new markets across Europe, Africa and Australia.
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"These days farmers don't just farm food, they also cultivate data – from drones flying over fields to smart irrigation systems, and  combines, seeders, sprayers and other drone sensors for agriculture," said Kristen Lauria, general manager of Watson Media 

The platform assesses data in an electronic field record to identify and communicate crop management patterns and insights. Enterprise businesses such as food companies, grain processors, or produce distributors can then work with farmers to leverage those insights. It helps track crop yield as well as the environmental, weather and plant biologic conditions that go into a good or bad yield, such as irrigation management, pest and disease risk analysis and cohort analysis for comparing similar subsets of fields.

The result isn't just more productive farmers. Watson Decision Platform for Agriculture could help a livestock company eliminate a certain mold or fungus from feed supply grains or help identify the best crop irrigation practices for farmers to use in drought-stricken areas like California.

Watson Decision Platform for Agriculture is built on IBM PAIRS Geoscope from IBM Research, which quickly processes massive, complex geospatial and time-based datasets collected by satellites, drones, aerial flights, millions of drone sensors for agriculture and weather models. It crunches large, complex data and creates insights quickly and easily so farmers and food companies can focus on growing crops for global communities.



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