Agriculture is one of the top verticals for the drone industry. A study by the Farm Journal says that about thirty percent of farmers in the US are already using drone technology; another 30 percent say they’ll use them this year. Market reports put the value of the agriculture sector at over $2 billion in the next few years. The ROI for the sector is already clear – and it’s getting better all the time. The Toro Company has announced a strategic minority equity investment in GreenSight Agronomics, a Boston-based provider of drone technology for golf course turf management, to improve integration with irrigation systems.
“As the golf industry expands its efforts to improve play and more efficiently use water, the application and advancement of technology will play a vital role,” said Philip Burkart, vice president of The Toro Company’s Irrigation and Lighting Businesses. “We are intrigued and see great potential to align with GreenSight Agronomics to apply their technologies and analytics with our water management expertise to further provide our customers with the best solutions. We look forward to working with the GreenSight team on ways to integrate their technologies into our Lynx Central Control system, with the intent of expanding the capabilities and access to timely course information so customers can address problems quickly and more precisely.”
GreenSight Agronomics was founded in 2015 by former defense contractor executives and engineers. Beyond just aerial imagery, GreenSight offers a “next generation agricultural intelligence platform.” Using autonomous drones, custom sensors, and machine learning-based data analytics technology, GreenSight provides turf managers with alerts on soil moisture, pest stress, and nutrient deficiency. GreenSight is the leader in turfgrass remote sensing, providing daily monitoring services at top golf courses, top agrochemical company test sites, and to specialty agriculture. The services provide value in several different ways – saving not only time and effort, but costs in fertilizer and pest management chemicals. With a tight integration with irrigation systems, agronomists will also save more water – an increasingly precious resource.
“GreenSight’s drone intelligence platform integration with automated irrigation systems gives customers timely information to address water management problems quickly and more precisely,” says Lilian Ting, GreenSight’s Director of Business Development. “By linking drone imagery into the IoT ecosystem, the ability of drones to solve specific industry problems greatly expands and increases the ROI of drone technology.”
“GreenSight is redefining precision agriculture by packaging automated drones, custom sensors and machine learning into a turn-key service. We are excited to partner with The Toro Company to deliver customers the ultimate in irrigation management technology for golf courses and beyond,” added James Peverill, CEO of GreenSight Agronomics.