New results from Motorleaf, Canada, demonstrate how greenhouses can automate important tasks using artificial intelligence (AI).
SunSelect Produce, a Canada-based vegetables processor, implemented Motorleaf’s AI technology at a 70-acre greenhouse in California. The AI technology reduced errors in estimating weekly tomato yields by 50% at the start, and one year later, showed a 72% reduction in error. Such precision enabled the company to fully automate harvest forecasting, saving each member of the grow team a day and a half of work each week, according to Victor Krahn, co-owner of SunSelect Produce.
“In the marketplace right now, as far as technology-based products, there’s nothing I’ve seen that is available to even touch this type of large-scale greenhouse production,” he adds. “We’re truly believers in the AI model; way more accurate results than our human scouting team.”
Motorleaf’s initial service resides in sophisticated software that provides automated, highly accurate harvest yield forecasts weeks in advance for cultivators of tomatoes and peppers.
"What's remarkable about AI is that it gets better and better over time with more greenhouse data, providing more and more value to greenhouses. That's a world first," says Alastair Monk, chief executive officer of Motorleaf.
Motorleaf’s current phase of data acquisition from SunSelect now aims to strengthen the automation technology, so it can surpass 2-week harvest yield predictions.