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Drones flying over orchards picking apples, robots harvesting ripe strawberries, a gel that allows seeds to germinate with very little water…these technologies sound like something out of a sci-fi movie, yet they really exist! While it is true that the three inventions mentioned above are not yet used in Quebec, many other technologies are in the service of agriculture, or com. agtechgradually appearing in our farms.
Science to the rescue
These technological innovations are present in all aspects of agriculture: biotechnology, management software, robotics and equipment, bioenergy, biomaterials and production systems. Companies around the world are mobilizing around the various problems farms face and developing technological solutions to solve them. Labor shortages, high energy prices, food waste, water shortages, bad weather… Wherever there is a problem, there is a solution, and many scientific minds are ready to meet these challenges!
And in 2023, Quebec will have more than a third of Canadian agricultural technology companies on its soil. Its development is largely due to federal and provincial government incentives to develop food self-sufficiency in Quebec. All we have to do is think about the upheaval we have seen during the pandemic and since the beginning of the war in Ukraine to understand how important it is not to depend too much on other countries to feed our population.
There are currently about 250 agrotechnology companies in Quebec, including Larvatria, which has developed an industrial process for biocomposting pig manure using flies. These feed on the bacteria in the manure, and the exchange of saliva gives the manure anti-parasitic properties. The flies are then used to produce a protein meal that will be used to feed the animals. The AIR program, also from Quebec, allows producers to detect fungal diseases and reduce pesticide use thanks to mobile microbe sensors and field weather stations.
And who knows, your passion for science, information technology, and nature might one day propel you into a world com. agtech Quebec to help farmers meet the challenges of tomorrow!