New consortium aiming to revolutionise sustainable farming monitoring  

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LINKING Environment And Farming (LEAF), Hummingbird Technologies and the Sustainable Food Trust (SFT) have launched the Sustainable Agriculture collaboration (SUS-Ag), a nine-month project funded via Innovate UK’s Sustainable Innovation Fund. 

Its aim is to revolutionise the way farmers report on and measure sustainability. The principal aims of the project are: 

●    To design a tool that is based on a harmonised framework for metrics.
●    To automate data collection and create an output dashboard.
●    To use cutting edge AI to look at the causal relationships in sustainability.

The project is being led by Hummingbird Technologies, which will use its remote sensing and AI capabilities to develop and build the web application and underlying models from the existing LEAF and SFT tools. Both LEAF and SFT have been pioneering these kinds of monitoring, verifying and reporting (MVR) tools for many years. 

Founder & CEO Will Wells said: “We are delighted to be working with both LEAF and SFT on this project. We see the need for this kind of sustainability monitoring tool in every country we operate in and it couldn’t be more timely given the global pressures on agriculture and the focus on a greener and cleaner future.”  

Chief Executive of LEAF, Caroline Drummond MBE, added: “Technology has developed exponentially over the last 20 years and we are excited to be working with Hummingbird Technologies and the Sustainable Food Trust to maximise our complimentary skills and capabilities. This work is set to make a significant contribution in supporting farmers and the wider food chain, in delivering meaningful and informed change through enhanced sustainability metrics.”

Patrick Holden, Sustainable Food Trust, Chief Executive concluded: “As farms throughout the world now occupy the majority of habitable land area, farmers need to be empowered to play a key role in addressing issues such as climate change, soil degradation and biodiversity loss. The Sustainable Food Trust is delighted to be working with LEAF and Hummingbird Technologies to create a harmonised sustainability assessment tool which will allow farmers to collect information in a clear and consistent way. We believe this tool could have multiple exciting uses, as part of future government support schemes as well as improving supply chain transparency and look forward to working with the team to build on this opportunity.” 

The project runs until July 2021.  It is funded by Innovate UK.