GFM Network News



The NAIO Oz is a weeding robot being tried in Ontario this summer.

Farm automation likely adopted in high-value crops first

Ontario crop service company creates agriculture robotic division

Reading Time: 2 minutes Glacier FarmMedia – The growing number of new crop automation products coming to market are finding their first uses in high-value crops, like vegetables or grapes. Several farm robots featured at the recent AgRobotics and Automation event hosted by the RH Accelerator focused on higher-value crops instead of corn, soybeans or wheat. The interest is […] Read more


(LakelandCollege.ca)

Alberta’s Lakeland to offer ag tech degree

College to launch first-in-Canada program in September

Reading Time: 2 minutes East-central Alberta’s Lakeland College is set to offer what’s billed as Canada’s first degree program in agriculture technology, as a two-year post-credential program, starting in September. The program, announced Wednesday, will consist of full-time studies at Lakeland’s campus at Vermilion, about 180 km east of Edmonton, plus “experiential learning practicums” off campus, en route to […] Read more

Wheat leaf rust. (James Kolmer photo courtesy ARS/USDA)

Digital supercluster backs precision fungicide development

Project aims at wheat leaf rust, reducing pesticide load

Reading Time: 3 minutes A West Coast ag tech company in the crop pest control business is setting its sights on wheat leaf rust, with support from one of Canada’s five research superclusters — but not the cluster you might expect. Out of the five federally-supported superclusters launched in early 2018, Protein Industries Canada has been most closely linked […] Read more


Staff demonstrate how the DOT autonomous power platform connects to an implement, using the Pattison Connect sprayer.

Autonomous farm machinery drives out into the desert

DOT Technology Corp. holds an impressive demo day in Arizona

Reading Time: 5 minutes It’s obvious that Norbert Beaujot invests a lot of time thinking about the coming transformation of ag machinery, and about how to explain it to the farmers who are going to be at the very centre of the action. Beaujot is founder of DOT Technology Corp. and the inventor of the DOT autonomous power platform, […] Read more

Staff prepares an autonomous DOT for a public demonstration during Canada’s Farm Progress Show in Regina in June.

Self-driving versus the lawyers

Fully autonomous farm vehicles are already here, but setting the rules for their use won’t be simple

Reading Time: 5 minutes The Senate of Canada had a pretty simple question when it held the hearings that led to is report, “Driving Change, Technology and the Future of the Automated Vehicle.” It’s a question farmers are asking too. When is all this technology going to arrive? You couldn’t exactly say the experts answered it with precision. Their […] Read more


Last November, Transport Canada presented draft changes to regulations governing UAVs.

UAV regs changing – for the better

Transport Canada looks to streamline and standardize the rules for drone use

Reading Time: 5 minutes The growth in the functionality of unmanned air vehicles (UAVs) over much of the past decade has been steady. From the early days when advisers, dealers, agronomists and laboratories purchased and used the units to derive valuable insights into crop performance to more recent sales of much simpler designs for hobby uses, UAVs have made […] Read more

A cutaway view of a Xaver robot shows it is built on a modular design, and in the future it could potentially be repurposed to do jobs other than seeding corn.

‘Xaver’-ing success

AGCO’s MARS project lands a new name ahead of its market release

Reading Time: 3 minutes Several months ago Country Guide reported on the field robot project called MARS, which is an acronym for Mobile Agricultural Robot Swarms. It began as a joint research project between the European Commission and AGCO’s Fendt brand. At the Agritechnica machinery show in Hanover, Germany, in November, AGCO revealed the project has moved beyond the […] Read more


The mobile robot unit (with the tower in the background) is capable of taking phenotypic measurements of a corn plant at three different levels, without damaging the plant.

Probing drought stress in corn

The potential for measuring, modelling and helping improve production is astounding

Reading Time: 6 minutes The design and creation of a new robotic device for phenotyping plants is a double-sided boon to agriculture. On one hand, it is indicative of the enormous potential of the autonomous systems now in development for farm applications. On the other, it’s a huge leap forward for researchers and plant breeders and their ability to […] Read more

Chris Neeser used a fixed-wing UAV and captured images three times during the season in two fields each of barley, canola, field peas, seed alfalfa, potatoes and spring wheat.

UAVs and crop scouting. Are they worth it?

Seven organizations supported a two-year study on whether drones can provide practical benefits to farmers

Reading Time: 5 minutes When Chris Neeser began to design a research project on the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in crop scouting, he wondered if anyone would be willing to fund it. “This was different from a typical research project,” says Neeser, a research scientist with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry’s Crop Diversification Centre, South, in Brooks. “There […] Read more