Since 2021, an AgRobotics Working Group comprised of more than 50 people (OMAFRA staff, Haggerty Creek AgRobotics, growers, grower associations, agri-business, universities and colleges, federal and municipal governments and technology companies) have been meeting weekly. The group brainstorms about available and future technologies, builds networks and collaborations, conducts on-farm demonstrations, and builds cross-functional teams to apply for funding opportunities in hopes of ground truthing these technologies in Ontario production systems. The technology companies are impressed with the diversity of production, government support and research capabilities in Ontario.
In 2021, Haggerty Creek AgRobotics Division along with OMAFRA and grower associations conducted six demonstrations with three different robots in Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, peppers, onions, carrots, celery, strawberries and haskaps. The robots included:
• Naïo Oz is an inter-row weeding robot. Capable of weeding through standing crops in row widths of 30” or more. Guided by RTK GPS. It can attach any implement, such as a 1-row seeder, hooded sprayer, wagon to haul loads, etc. video of two robots in a celery field
• Naïo Dino is an inter-row weeding robot. Capable of weeding in any row spacing (adjustable tool bar) of a standing crop. Guided by RTK GPS.
• Korechi RoamIO is an autonomous platform for soil sensing, mowing, cultivating, the limit is your imagination.
Projects currently underway in 2022 include five different robots in various crops and locations performing numerous tasks: seeding, weeding (active and passive), mowing, soil sampling and analysis. They are FarmDroid, Naïo Dino, Nexus La Chèvre Korechi RoamIO, HCT and Raven OMNiPOWER.
The AgRobotics Working Group continues to submit funding applications to test other technologies in many different production systems. We encourage anyone with an interest in automation to participate in the working group.
Come out to any of the demonstration days planned so far:
- June 28: 2 pm – 4pm
Robotic Row Mow Field Day a Living Laboratories Initiative
11234 Cedar Hedge Line, Dresden, ON
No registration required.
- July 6: 9 am – 12 noon
AgRobotics Field Demonstration
Start at: University of Guelph Muck Crops Research Station
1125 Woodchoppers Lane, Kettleby, ON L0G 1J0
In-field and in-person only demonstration of the Naïo Dino and Nexus La Chèvre
No registration required.
- July 13: 9 am – 4 pm
AgRobotics Field Tour
Start at: Haggerty Creek Ltd. (Haggerty AgRobotics Company)
7708 Bentpath Line, Bothwell, ON N0P 1C0
Registration required for virtual or in person participation and see the FarmDroid, Korechi RoamIO, Naïo Oz, Nexus La Chèvre and Raven OMNIPower.
Source: Kristen Obeid, OMAFRA weed management specialist-horticulture, June 20, 2022.