Scotland: Potato growers dig the latest smartphone technology

New smartphone tech could give potato producers better data on their crop yields. Picture: Johnston PressWhile the world of high-tech wizardry tends to conjure up images of drones crowding the sky as driverless tractors till the fields below, two of the latest developments in this area for tattie growers require nothing more exotic than a mobile phone. As part of the smart farming project, a software-based potato yield model that has been developed jointly by agridata centre Agrimetrics and the National Institute of Agricultural Botany (NIAB) is aimed at giving farmers reliable predictions on a crop’s likely yield and value via their smartphones. The developers claim that using these devices to collect information about planting date and emergence along with field images of the crop canopy taken with the phone’s camera can help growers get a better idea of what is happening under the soil. “Decades of science and field experience are being made available in a user-friendly way,” said ­Professor Mario Caccamo of Agrimetrics. More