Smart Agriculture Solutions
2021-03-19 21:41XAG Released Corporate Social Responsibility Report 2020 to Share Progress in Advancing a Food-Secure Future2021-03-19 21:41More >On March 17, XAG announced the release of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Report 2020 at Digital Agriculture and Sustainable Development Forum in Beijing. The report highlights XAG’s actions and accomplishments in advancing UN’s sustainable development goals across five key areas: community, environment, safety, pandemic and partnership. Through the scale-up of agriculture innovations (drones, robots, artificial intelligence, etc.), XAG has contributed its efforts to provide abundant, safe, nutritious food while revitalising rural economy and reducing the industry’s environmental footprints on earth. Digital Agriculture and Sustainable Development ForumThe Digital Agriculture and Sustainable Development Forum is a flagship program held by XAG, which has assembled top scholars and experts from Tsinghua University, China Sustainability Tribute, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), World Food Programme (WFP), and World Wildlife Fund (WWF). Dr Kai-Fu Lee, Chairmen and CEO of Sinovation Ventures and He Fan, Professor of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Antai College of Economics & Management were invited to join the conversation with XAG to discuss how digital technologies can transform agriculture for a sustainable future.Rural Communities XAG’s CSR report 2020 is known to be the first-ever corporate social responsibility report issued in Chinese agritech sector. It shows the importance of technology as a great equaliser to improve the well-being of human. Zhu Xufeng, Executive Dean of Institute for Sustainable Development Goals, Tsinghua University, suggested that digital technology can help eliminate poverty and achieve zero hunger, while off-setting the adverse effect of food production on climate and environment. Founded in 2007, XAG develops six product lines - agricultural drone, remote sensing drone, unmanned ground vehicle, agriculture IoT, Autopilot Console, and Smart Agriculture System which are applied to innovatively change the face of agriculture. Up to December 2020, XAG has introduced over 66000 sets of autonomous devices into 42 countries and regions, having served 9.31 million farmers and 52 million farmlands with efficiency and precision. With drones and robots replacing manual labour to conduct seeding, fertilising, and crop spraying, farmers can reduce their physical burden and improve livelihood by managing their fields in a more effective and simpler way. Attracting rural youth back to countrysideXAG seeks to make agriculture a knowledge- and technology-intensive sector, attracting young people back to the countryside and creating new and decent employment opportunities. For example, XAG Academy was established in 2016 as a knowledge sharing platform and has provided online & offline courses for 91025 registered students. These students could learn a wide range of modern agricultural skills, covering drone operations, crop cultivation and pest control. In addition, to address the issue of gender equality in rural areas, XAG has offered modern skills training for rural women who could work as drone operators with agricultural know-how to raise their incomes. Food Supply Strengthening food security towards a zero-hunger future is one of the top priorities of XAG’s CSR strategy. Through empowering farmers with flexible, cost-effective tools to protect their farms against natural disasters, pest diseases, and mechanical crop damage, XAG has helped close yield gap by about 8.21 million tons of food crops, enough to feed about 16.42 million people for a year. Leverage tech to ensure abundant, safe, nutritious foodFor example, throughout 2019 to 2020, XAG worked with Sunagri Zambia to dispatch fully autonomous drones for the fight against the crop-devouring fall armyworms. Drones were able to accurately control the nocturnal pests with less pesticide used, which became a major high-tech force to curb the spread of fall armyworms. This operation has managed to lower the impacts of disasters on food yields and supported the livelihood of African farmers who did not have access to advanced equipment. Peng Bin, Founder and CEO of XAG, proposed that unmanned technology is the key to achieving the zero-hunger goal. The world is expected to face with rapidly increasing food demand in coming years, whereas the global and local agricultural workforce has been shrinking sharply. “In the future, our farms would be covered with robots which can operate automatically to finish those repetitive, tedious field works,” he said. Environmental Footprint The report also reveals how agritech can contribute to reduce pesticide use, mitigate climate change, and maintain biodiversity on land. The variable-rate precision spraying technology designed for XAG’s agricultural drones allows farmers to use 30% less pesticide and 90% less water during crop protection. Since 2017, XAG has racked up 45,363 tons reduction in pesticide use, while saving nearly 15.39 million tons of water, equivalent to the annual water consumption of 200,000 residents. XAG R150 Unmanned Ground Vehicle conducted precision spraying on dragon fruitsAccording to the United Nations, agriculture and other related industries account for one third of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. To reduce the carbon footprint of food production, XAG has turned to smart electric powered devices for crop cultivation, instead of the traditional oil-fired machinery run by non-renewable fossil energy. XAG’s agricultural drone operations have cut down 760,000 tons of carbon emissions, equivalent to planting 10.32 million trees. In face of the loss of biodiversity, agricultural drones can be adapted to restore degraded grasslands, providing new approaches for environmental protection in hard-to-reach areas. In 2020, XAG closely worked with local government and Landcare network to launch the first-ever post-fire drone seeding operation on Lack Cobrico, Victoria State of Australia. Drones were deployed to spread grass seeds to re-establish the native vegetation within a fire-ravaged peat swamp. Australian post-fire recoveryXAG is a tech firm devoted to the realm of agriculture, but it is also committed to operating as a caring and responsible corporate citizen with sustainable business pattern. With its unremitting efforts to scale up agritech and tackle rural ageing, XAG was recognised for Sustainability Innovation in Reuters Responsible Business Awards 2020. Keeping its eyes aimed at global challenges such as hunger, poverty, climate change, and social inequality, XAG will continue to join hands with governments, clients, and partners to advance the 17 sustainable development goals.
2021-02-26 00:02XAG and Thai Government Held High-level Dialogue on Smart Agriculture2021-02-26 00:02More >On February 23, XAG joined a high-level dialogue with Thai government to discuss the future of Sino-Thai cooperation on advancing agriculture in Thailand. The list of attendees included nearly 100 senior officials and experts from The Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives (MOAC), The Office of the Board of Investment (BOI), Office of The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC), The Geo-Informatics and Space Technology Development Agency (GISTDA), The Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT), Kasetsart University (KU), Eastern Economic Corridor Office of Thailand (EECO). The talks were chaired by Miss Natenapa Kongsri, Consul-General of the Royal Thai Consulate-General in Guangzhou. Both sides have exchanged views on how to apply agriculture AI, promote digital technology, and develop drone regulations in China and Thailand, hoping to establish partnerships that can drive transformation of the Thai agriculture industry towards sustainable and inclusive growth. Proposed solutions involved providing unmanned equipment, such as agricultural drones, to smallholders and collaborative farms in Thailand. Since 2018, Thailand has launched the 20-year National Strategy as well as implementing the “Thailand 4.0” initiative, a sector-specific industrial policy to revitalise its economy through digital transformation. The traditional labor-intensive crop cultivation model should fade out and give away to smart agriculture based on technology and innovation. According to Justin Gong, Co-founder of XAG, the global food system is now faced with challenges such as climate change and rural aging, and unmanned technology is the key to breaking the bottleneck of agricultural development. “In China, we have been successfully scaling up autonomous agricultural drones to rural areas across the nation and served millions of farmers. This provides a role model and practical experiences for Thailand to rebuild its smallholder economy,“ said Gong. Dares Kittiyopas, Inspector-General of the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives of Thailand, expressed the interests to further strengthen the relations with XAG, bridging the digital gap with agri-tech innovation in agriculture. “We look forward to the opportunity of conducting agricultural drone demonstration and training in Thailand, while working to improve rules and regulations on drone governance,” she said.
2021-01-25 15:47XAG Suggests Drones Could Outsmart Locust Swarms at Night2021-01-25 15:47More >25 January 2020, Guangzhou - The UN warned last week that East Africa remains under the threat of desert locust invasions, due to the prevailing favourable breeding conditions which enable new swarms to form and increase. As African countries are getting prepared for the imminent locust crisis, XAG has proposed that agricultural drones, through more targeted night spraying application, can strongly support the current ground and aerial control measures. Drones specifically developed by XAG for agriculture can be used to combat the ravenous pests that have wreaked havoc on food crops and placed millions of people into hunger.XAG Agricultural Drone conducted unmanned spraying operation in ZambiaDrones to Ease the Burden The unusually rapid spreading of locusts in Africa is largely the result of erratic weather associated with climate change. Prolonged rains lead to moist, humid desert lands and flourishing vegetation, which creates a conducive environment for locust swarms to breed freely. According to the FAO Desert Locust situation update on 22 January, the Greater Horn of Africa, including Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, is the most-affected region witnessing the arrival of more immature swarms. The estimated above-the-average rainfalls brought by Cyclone Gati cause the swarms to complete maturation and lay eggs. This will give rise to multiple generations to be born during February and March, again putting food security and the livelihoods of rural households in danger since the last upsurge turned calm in July 2020. Finding versatile, easy-to-use new tools to tackle these notorious locusts becomes more urgent when local farmers and response teams have been struggling to contain them. In times of this crisis, drones provide an innovative complementary solution to the more expensive manned aircraft or the less effective manual spraying method. They can be used to conduct ultra-low-volume (ULV) precision spraying of chemical or biological pesticides to kill the locusts, especially in the impacted areas otherwise inaccessible for ground vehicles and aeroplanes.Locust swarms devour tree leaves When the locust swarms are unscrupulously flying and densely-packed during day, it is suggested unsafe and ineffective for drones to carry out spraying operations. However, XAG’s agricultural drones with night-operation mode are able to join the locust “air force” under certain circumstances. They can either target the wingless nymphs and hopper bands at the early stage, or launch an attack when the flying adults settle down after sunset. The use of unmanned devices is also expected to help lessen the strain on supplies and human resources that are needed to suppress the locust outbreaks in the poverty-stricken regions of Africa. Fitted with four rotary atomisers, XAG’s agricultural drones can operate fully autonomous on a predetermined path and deliver uniform sprays three metres above the targeted locust swarms. This means that less sophisticated skills of the field operators are required, while reducing the quantities of pesticides used to minimum level. Such unmanned technology therefore shows strengths to fight a locust invasion amid travelling restrictions and social distancing imposed due to COVID-19. The Night Guard to Protect Livelihoods In a recent demonstration of drone spraying, Sunagri Investment Zambia Limited, as XAG’s global partner in Africa, has put forward the new ideas of night-time locust control to the Ministry of Agriculture and Zambia Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU). It is now on track to get its XAG gear ready for possible locust outbreak during the upcoming dry season. Sunagri offers precision crop-spraying service with XAG’s agricultural drones in Zambia, Uganda and Tanzania, helping farmers sustainably treat pest diseases and reap the benefits of improved yields. In 2019, XAG has worked with Sunagri to provide drone interventions that yielded success to manage the crop-devouring fall armyworm. Fraser Zhang, the owner of Sunagri Zambia, explained the solution on how to apply drones more effectively to support the locust control operations. The first step is to survey and map the fields before sunset in which locust swarms are identified. Then drones can be deployed at night to concentrate their spraying forces against swarms which become inactive and rest on trees or on the ground after sunset. Zambia youth operated XAG Agricultural Drone to take off“During daytime, the locust swarms spread out over an extremely large area and stay mobile in the air for long periods. Their dynamic movement makes them much more difficult to be contained. But at night, what we would aim for are static objects which can be accurately sprayed,” said Zhang. The Desert locusts are one of the species of short-horned grasshoppers, which have been considered the world’s most destructive migratory pest. They usually form into a swarm whose density can reach up to a whopping 80 million per square kilometre, eating massive amounts of crops and vegetations and leaving people inflicted with food losses. The locusts can reproduce exponentially, and if left unchecked, a group of its population would multiply 20-fold in only three months and grow 400 times in half a year. According the United Nation, since January 2020, the hungry desert locusts have swept across dozens of countries in Africa and Southwest Asia, some of which reported the worst locust upsurge in decades. The Greater Horn of Africa and Yemen are the epicentre of crisis, with over 48 million people facing acute food insecurity. Zambia also experienced a similar infestation on 300,000 hectares of land in 2020, but by a different species called African Migratory Locusts (AML). “The Western Province of Zambia is worst-hit by the locusts. It is anticipated that the mature swarms have already laid eggs at this point, which will hatch and lead to a new wave of invasions in coming months,” said Fraser Zhang. With more extreme weather events making frequent occurrences, the locust crisis is not likely to fade away very soon. We should be racing to test new tools and technologies such as agricultural drones which would help better respond to any outbreaks now and in the future.