Through multiple programs, the Canadian Government invested more than $10M in Canadian company ecoation and their Human+Machine AI and Robotics Platform to help globally scale the companies' offerings and services.
Built on more than a decade of R&D and field trials, ecoation has developed a remote crop management and grower assist platform that uses AI and robotics for three important pillars of activities on the farm and in the greenhouse: Integrated Pest Management (IPM), Yield Assessment, and Crop Work Quality Check. The service package includes all the hardware, network, and technology necessary to perform automated tasks and digitization of data. It also includes at least one hour per week of consultation and analytics to ensure farmers and growers meet their objectives per their data collection and farm digitization strategy.
ecoation says it is ready to launch its platform for global use. "We already have robots active in farms across Canada, The United States, Mexico, and Europe, and are in the process of launching its platform in geographies as far as Russia, China, Japan, and Australia," they say. "While our initial target is high-tech greenhouses with pipe rails, we have also developed product lines that can be used in mid-tech and low-tech greenhouses without pipe rails."
"It’s more important than ever for our farmers to have access to technology,” says the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Environment and Climate Change. “Support from the Government of Canada will help to ensure growers are able to make more informed decisions on how to best manage their crops, leading to more efficient pesticide use and stronger yields. Projects like these are important to the agri-tech sector, as they help increase economic prosperity and keep the sector competitive for future generations to come. ecoation’s technology contributes major strides towards securing more consistent crop yields and tackling the prevalent horticulture labor shortage.”
Green economic recovery
The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, agrees. “Canadian clean tech innovation will be the driving force behind a green economic recovery,” he says. “It will not only create many thousands of well-paying jobs but also help build a sustainable future for all Canadians. With this investment in clean technologies, we are strengthening support for the Canadian innovators forging the global path to a net-zero reality by 2050.”
“Data-driven decision making based on live field data makes a significant difference in how farms and greenhouses manage their operations,” says ecoation Founder and CEO Dr. Saber Miresmailli. “After a decade of research and development, we narrowed down the dynamic data collection to those that can truly help growers fulfill their operational strategical goals. We developed a platform that presents these data sets and analytics as actionable intelligence.”
But providing data and insight is not enough, Miresmailli says. To ensure that data and intel led to action, the impact is measured, and adjustments are done in timely fashion, ecoation created the Human+Machine platform.
“This is where human experts can take their insight and expertise beyond the boundaries of time and geography, and algorithms can autonomously make necessary adjustment,” Miresmailli says. “The Canadian government supported this effort for more than a decade and is now further supporting the global scale-up of this Made-in-Canada technology platform. We could not achieve this without the help of Provincial and Federal programs, and we are extremely grateful for their continued support.”