Agritech Highlights in Asia
What’s going on in Asia’s agritech industry? Here’s a compilation of 10 latest noteworthy news pieces highlighting technology in agriculture towards a more sustainable and technologically-integrated future.
- Thailand’s National Innovation Agency (NIA) invests in the country’s food-tech startups as part of its Space F project in a bid to become the next “food-tech Silicon Valley”. Some of the key food-tech trends covered by the Space F project are alternative proteins, smart manufacturing, packaging solutions, restaurant tech, and intelligent food services among others.
- Farmers in the Philippines’ Antique province harvest a substantial 67 tonnes of beta carotene-enriched Golden Rice for the first time. The genetically-engineered rice is rich in Vitamin A, and Professor Ingo Potrykus, the inventor of Golden Rice, sees its cultivation in the Philippines as a breakthrough.
- China’s advanced planting techniques for growing vegetables in the desert reduces Qatar’s reliance on imported vegetables and agriculture products during the 2022 FIFA World Cup in the host country.
- Partnership between Syngenta Asia Pacific and image recognition specialist, Plantix to provide at least 500,000 smallholder farmers across Asia Pacific with access to AI-enabled digital farming tools.
- The agency for commercialisation of nanotechnology and advanced solutions in Malaysia launches the Biomass Innovation Circular Economy Programme (BICEP). This sustainable agriculture initiative promotes the use of biomass waste materials from agricultural sources to produce advanced materials and products for industrial and consumer applications.
- Higher learning institutes in Singapore partner with Japan’s Shizuoka Prefecture to train and develop talent for the agritech industry and equip Singapore’s workforce with agritech skills to support the agrifood industry.
- Solar-powered cold storage hubs help keep Indian farmers’ harvest fresh and reduce waste amid heatwave in the country and rising temperatures, solving not only the socioeconomic challenges faced by farmers but also environmental challenges. They can harvest their produce about twice a week and sell at better prices without having to harvest all at once.
- Taiwan transforms unused train stations into underground vertical farms to grow organic fresh produce, using high tech equipment to regulate conditions such as light, temperature, and nutrients most beneficial to plant growth.
- The Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate (AIM4C) announces innovation sprints at United Nation’s Climate Change Conference 2022, including one led by the International Center for Maize and Wheat Improvement (CIMMYT) to enable smallholder farmers to achieve efficient and effective nitrogen fertiliser management. From 2022 to 2025, this sprint will steer US $90 million towards empowering small-scale producers in China, India, Laos, and Pakistan as well as other countries in Africa and Latin America.
- Abu Dhabi-based desert tech funding platform, DANA Global, invites other women-led startups to participate in programme advancing agritech solutions to address crop optimisation, pest management, and systems efficiency among others in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and wider Middle East/North Africa (MENA) region.