We published the list and short biographies of our invited speakers today. We are again privileged to have an extremely knowledgeable group representing farmers, technologists and researchers from both sides of the Tasman Sea.
Conference keynotes and new LandWISE Australians include Ian Layden and Julie O’Halloran, precision horticulture researchers and extension specialists from the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF).
Ian and Julie are leading a group of two dozen top growers and agronomists for a week of related events built around the LandWISE Conference. Queensland farmer Ben Moore and Tasmanian farmer Robbie Tole will present their own experiences investigating precision horticulture opportunities.
Returning LandWISE Australians are Tristan Perez from Queensland University of Technology and John McPhee from the University of Tasmania. Tristan will update us on progress with weeding robot AgBot II and Harvey the capsicum picker. John will tell us about precision horticulture research underway in Tasmania.
Parallel work is being done in New Zealand. Look for reports from Plant and Food researchers Sarah Sinton, Paul Johnstone and long serving LandWISE Board member Bruce Searle. Chris Smith from AgriOptics, Jane Adams of OnionsNZ and LandWISE’s Dan Bloomer and Justin Pishief will overlay a series of precision cropping and related topics. Charles Merfield from the Future Farming Centre will give a review of biostimulants and related technologies – a different aspect of the agritech revolution.
Rounding out Day 1 are agritech accelerator Sprout Entrepreneur in Residence Stu Bradbury and two accelerating companies represented by Tom Rivett and Julian McCurdy.
Day 2 has a focus on value from data and robotics. We hear a lot about “big data” and “value chains”: what are they? Alistair Mowat, James Beech and Megan Cushnahan will tell us how they and others are getting real value, and where there’s still value to be tapped. Roger Williams will outline how Plant and Food is investing in digital horticulture research.
Lincoln Agritech’s Armin Werner has been a regular attendee at LandWISE. This year he takes the stage with a global review of field robotics and weeding technologies in particular. Kit Wong will tell us about Callaghan Innovation development of systems for machine vision to manage onion crops.
David Herries of Interpine will take us to a different sector and explain how UAVs are giving value in forest research and management. And rounding it all up, Simon Morris of ALtus UAS will make sure we understand the regulations governing our use of this still new but very powerful technology.
So come to LandWISE 2016: the value of smart farming. Have you mind expanded, your knowledge updated and your excitement kindled. Mix and mingle with leaders in farming, agronomy and agtech!