Bayer collaborates with AI specialist

Arming farmers with innovative crop protection tools powered by a faster data-driven system is the focus of a new collaboration between technology platform company Kebotix and Bayer. Today’s partnership announcement comes at a time when farmers worldwide are losing as much as 50 percent of their crops when fields are left unprotected against weeds, insects and diseases.

Cambridge, Mass.-based Kebotix uses artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and robotics to accelerate the discovery of new chemicals. Those discoveries can then be used by researchers within Bayer’s Crop Science R&D program to advance new crop protection solutions.

“Early phase projects often have unexplored chemistry which requires a lot of time to find its best or most effective use,” said Dr. Jill S. Becker, Kebotix CEO and founder. “Our AI tools not only optimize chemical reactions, but discover paths to higher yields, positively affecting the bottom line in direct and multiple ways.”

Bayer scientists consistently challenge themselves to discover new generations of crop protection substances that meet the expectations of farmers and society. The accelerated synthesis, through work with Kebotix, will allow them to gain speed and precision via Kebotix’s innovative technology and harness the immense potential of AI.

“AI-augmented automated infrastructures have the potential to provide us with a totally new scale of support to unlock challenging chemistries,” said David Bernier, Science Fellow, Bayer Crop Science, R&D Disease Control Chemistry. “We believe this support will enable our chemists to deliver faster innovative solutions to serve agriculture. The visionary team at Kebotix supports us in turning this aspiration into a reality. We feel confident having them on our side along this journey.”

Kebotix scientists will join other industry leaders to discuss Bayer’s open innovation strategy and the importance of recent collaborations with innovative startups at AgConnect  – April 21 – AI Meets Agricultural Research. The free virtual discussion will focus on how AI is working to bring affordable, high-quality, and safe innovative products faster to the farm for the benefit of growers everywhere.

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