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How to transfer data into higher yields:

Agrilyst wants to provide an alternative to your old-fashioned clipboard

On a daily basis, greenhouse growers are confronted with a variety of information and data coming from various areas; they have climate control and nutrient data, shipping schemes, data from task and labor management and most likely even more data from coming from other production processes. NY-based startup Agrilyst was born in the nexus of all that data, in order to make sense of it all and provide growers with a more complete picture to optimize their operations.

If it were up to Allison Kopf, growers would no longer walk around with their clipboards spending hours collecting and analyzing data across various system environments.

Together with co-founder Jason Camp, she started Agrilyst to aggregate data from the sensors and systems of an indoor farm into one platform. "We want to make sense of all that data and provide growers with more predictable and actionable insights."

Allison Kopf of Agrilyst at the Indoor Ag-Con in Las Vegas earlier this year.

During her previous career at BrightFarms, Kopf gained firsthand experience on the aggregate data problem many growers face.

"Many indoor farms are using technologies and processes that still require operators to record information by hand. While there is an abundance of data available, it’s inaccessible to growers, as the data exists in fragmented independent systems. Too much time and money are spent transferring this data into a grower’s daily plan."

Together with Camp, a former software engineer at Google, the first version of the Agrilyst intelligence platform was developed about one year ago.

From day one they had a selected group of growers working with them. "We started Agrilyst to help growers with their everyday challenges, and that begins with data management.”

About one year later, and having won several start-up awards, Agrilyst's platform is helping a growing group of indoor farmers obtain a more complete picture of what is going on in their facilities.

"When we started Agrilyst, there was no system able to aggregate data from every area of operational management.”

Kopf stressed, “unlike many technology providers in greenhouse horticulture, Agrilyst is not building climate control systems and sensors. Instead, we work together with key climate controls companies, like Priva or Wadsworth, to integrate climate system data into the platform. Together with crop production data, Agrilyst better predicts how a farm will perform.” Agrilyst’s platform doesn’t just analyze an individual farm’s data, but also incorporates outside academic and industry resources.

“Our goal is to help growers make better decisions. In addition to platform analytics, we have expertise from in-house horticulturalists as well as partnerships with academia and industry leaders in order to provide growers with broader access to information.”

Having all farm data accessible within the Agrilyst platform enables growers to not only look back historically, but moreover will enable them to pick up on trends and plan proactively, making improved decisions daily.

"This helps growers predict when they might need to adjust crop cycles in order to avoid the risk of pests. Or they can optimize space better for yield and crop turns by modeling different scenarios throughout the year. Having accessible data and real-time analytics enables a grower to save time, contain costs, and increase farm productivity."

The platform also streamlines daily operations with practical solutions.

"With Agrilyst, growers can pull up details on a specific crop batch on their phone or tablet by simply scanning a barcode. While out in the field, growers can see when the batch was seeded, when it is scheduled to be harvested, what the expected yield is, what tasks were performed on the batch, and which employees completed those tasks.”

Besides running real-time analytics to provide information and ways to improve operations on a daily basis, Agrilyst recently launched a new feature where growers receive a weekly report on their operation that includes a performance overview and crop yield metrics. But Kopf believes there is plenty more to add in the near future.

"Innovation and the introduction of new technologies will take center stage in horticulture. Imagine optimizing for color, texture, flavor profile, or specific health benefits. With data-driven operations, that future isn’t far off. The possibilities are endless."

Agrilyst is available for a monthly subscription.

More information?
Allison Kopf
[email protected]