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$49.5 million awarded to Alberta Innovates to boost tech in ag


July 26, 2019
By Top Crop Manager


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Alberta Innovates will be partnering with a range of agriculture focused organizations to share a $49.5 million investment awarded by the Canadian Agri-Food Automation and Intelligence Network (CAAIN).

Alberta Innovates will be partnering with organizations including the Vineland Research and Innovation Centre, Olds College, MDA Systems Ltd., Linamar Corp., Lakeland College, DOT Technology Corporation, and TrustBIX. The funding will be shared and used to drive automation and digitization of Canada’s agricultural sector.

The Strategic Innovation Fund Stream 4 award is provided by the federal ministry of Innovation, Science and Economic Development.

The larger network of CAAIN brings together over 61 technology and agri-food companies to create solutions that improve the agricultural industry, whether it’s driving growth or creating jobs. It is a platform to “pursue precision, productivity and premiums.”

Projects within CAAIN will use a variety of technologies such as artificial intelligence, advanced sensors, hyperspectral imaging, and blockchain. Applications of the technology by agricultural operations and food manufacturers are focused in three areas:

  • Bringing together an ecosystem of autonomous processes, modules and machines to advance the use and value of automation and robotics in agriculture and food.
  • Building machine learning and artificial intelligence-enabled decision models that optimize production, reduce risk and target specific values demanded in the market and blockchain infrastructure that verifies that value for consumers.
  • Creating and implementing a smart farm platform that integrates partners and creates the context for testing, demonstrating, and scaling technologies.

“The CAAIN network will build on innovation within the agricultural sector by bringing technology to market, applying data and new problem-solving technologies like artificial intelligence, and identifying opportunities for collaboration across the value chain between sectors,” said Laura Kilcrease, CEO of Alberta Innovates.