Harvesting the Benefits of Digital Agriculture 2017
Digital agriculture is rapidly evolving to be a much bigger story than individual pieces of technology. The potential for data acquired through digital agriculture to fundamentally change supply chains and business systems is real and immediate. The Harvesting the Benefits of Digital Agriculture conference will examine the actual and potential impacts of digital agriculture, and how farmers, agribusinesses and policy-makers can harness the benefits associated with the changes that are occurring.
The Australian Farm Institute convened a highly successful Digital Disruption in Agriculture conference in June 2016. The conference explored how digital technologies have the potential to change farm production practices and inform decision-making on-farm through accumulation and analysis of vast amounts of data.
As digital agriculture technologies mature it is becoming obvious that the impacts of data collected on-farm and post-farm will reach well beyond the point in the supply chain that the data originated from. While some may see this as a threat, it also provides opportunities for more efficient supply chains and entirely new models for service delivery.
This year’s conference will go beyond the individual applications to explore the ways that entire agricultural supply chains, business systems and government and market compliance systems will be disrupted and changed by the application of digital technology.
The conference will be held at the Crown Promenade Melbourne, with two full conference days on Thursday 15 and Friday 16 June, and a dinner including a keynote speaker on the evening of Thursday 15 June.
Bronze Conference Sponsors
SESSION 1: Who will benefit from digital agriculture?
Digital agriculture has the potential to fundamentally transform production systems and supply chains. This session will involve international and Australian speakers providing an overview on the challenges and opportunities of digital agriculture. The speakers will showcase their vision for how digital technologies will shape the future of Australian agriculture, including benefits for the production sector.
SESSION 2: Digital technology through the supply chain (and its impacts on-farm)
The adoption of digital information management systems is occurring at a rapid rate in the food and fibre processing and retail sectors. As these systems are maturing, new opportunities are emerging for better integration of on-farm and post-farm management of digital information. This creates opportunities to more closely tailor farm production to supply chain needs, potentially unlocking new price premiums based on product quality while reducing the cost of compliance requirements. This session will involve speakers from a range of supply chains, providing insight on how digital information systems are influencing decision-making.
SESSION 3: The role of digital technologies in governance and compliance systems
Digital systems provide new ways of complying with stewardship programs and regulatory requirements. This in turn will impact the agricultural sectors ability to maintain its ‘social license to operate’. This session will feature speakers who have been involved in the development of digital systems that allow farmers and supply chain participants to more efficiently manage compliance requirements as well as examining the legal and trust issues around sharing the data integral to such systems.
SESSION 4: The impacts of digital technologies on the rural workforce
Digital technologies are impacting both positively and negatively on the agricultural workforce and rural communities. This session will discuss whether new technologies will help or hinder attracting and retaining people in agriculture and regional communities.
Conference dinner with keynote speaker
SESSION 5: Traceability and providence – will digital technologies help to sell agricultural produce with confidence and will farmers see the benefit?
The ability to access markets for agricultural produce increasingly depends on the ability to demonstrate that it is safe or has been produced in a particular way. Digital agriculture is providing efficient and data rich methods for tracking food through supply chains and attaching information about providence. This session will examine how this data should benefit the producer as much as the consumer.
SESSION 6: The connection between digital agriculture and agricultural finance
The ability of a farm business to access required capital is enhanced by accurate data about its profitability and financial sustainability. This session will explore how data acquired through digital agriculture can help this process as well as the other impacts that digital technologies will have on the flow of money through food and agriculture supply chains.
SESSION 7: Is the agriculture sector 'investment ready' for digital products and services
This session will explore the business environment required for developing and providing digital products and services to agriculture. Is agriculture speaking the right language to attract tech companies and are connectivity limitations going to allow full development of potential technology?
SESSION 8: The global context
The final session of the conference will present a panel of international and local experts talking about how global trends in technology will impact on Australian agriculture as well as how Australian agriculture can use digital technologies to impact on the rest of the world.
Images: CAFNR, ibmphoto24, USGS, USDA