After Bayer-Monsanto merger, will ‘big ag’ invest in big data?

Precision Agriculture
Image source: newshawktime.com

The merger has been a laboured one: in order to please regulators, Bayer had to sell its seed and herbicide department to BASF, and Monsanto agreed to retire its brand name. But the new conglomerate argues that their union was dictated by the need to consolidate their respective positions and face down future challenges: namely, feeding a global population likely to exceed ten billion by 2050.

As is to be expected with mergers of this size, there has been no shortage of voices denouncing this new behemoth, which will control 70% of the chemicals and pesticides used by farmers worldwide.

[T]he simple fact is that feeding 10 billion people will require even more technology. Fortunately, the future is already here: artificial intelligence, big data and precision agriculture. [Liam] Condon’s [head of Bayer’s crop science division, who will take the reigns as CEO] priority should therefore be how to communicate that it is with ‘precision’ agriculture that the world will be able to do more and better with less.

Big Agro is … not at a loss for coming up with forward thinking solutions, and one can imagine that the Bayer-Monsanto merger will play a major part in this transformation.

Read full, original post: Should we be afraid of the Bayer-Monsanto merger?

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