June 21st2018, Bayer, XAG and Alibaba Rural Taobao jointly released ‘Sustainable Farming Programme (SFP)’ in Beijing, China. SFP would like to engage partners in fields of agriculture and technology from all over the world, aims to develop sustainable agriculture with advanced technologies, provide solutions for agricultural production,launch demonstration farmsand promote safe, healthy, environmental-friendly management. The ultimate goal is to deliver affordable, sufficient, safe, reliable and quality food to consumers.
“Sustainable Farming Programme” Signing Ceremony
With the growth of world’s population and people’s demand for better lives, they need more pollution-free, safe and better-quality food. But limited farmland and water resources, result in more people and less food, which makes the burden unbearable for the nature.
Dr. Mathias Kremer, Head of Crop Strategies & Portfolio Management at Bayer CropScience, remarked at the conference that: Although facing tremendous challenges, the opportunities we see in agriculture are very inspiring. Innovations provide us with novel means to break the bottlenecks, and make it possible for us to help meet the elevated needs in food while being mindful of our environmental footprint, thus striving for the sustainable growth for human kind.
Dr. Mathias Kremer, Head of Crop Strategies & Portfolio Management at Bayer Crop Science
Therefore, SFP was born, it allows farmers to pick up the latest farming innovations, makes agricultural production smarter and environmental friendly. It aims to preserve the environment while pursuing the maximum of productivity, to achieve green, sustainable agriculture.
The demonstration farms unveiled at the conference, were carefully selected by SFP thorough scientific assessments. The experiments towards different crops and farm management methods, will be done under various climate conditions. Combined with Bayer’s worldwide sustainable farming experience, it will make the experiments more representative and become the foundation of long-term, scientific criteria of agricultural development. The worldwide promotion of SFP will redefine agriculture.
Create Value for Farmers with Technology Collaboration
By establishing a comprehensive intelligent agricultural management system, the farmers who work with SFP will have the support for cultivation, planting, management, and harvest. The precision and digitalisation of agriculture will massively reduce the uncertainty of production caused by irregular weather, help farmers get rid of the high-risk, segmented and low-efficiency production methods, which will improve quality and productivity of agricultural products.
Weidong Huang, Country Head of Greater China at Bayer Crop Science claimed that: Food security, food health, environmental preservation and sustainability are related to every one in the world. The mission statement of Bayer is ‘Science for a better life’, we are honoured to work in such partnerships. Through SFP, we will help growers to further optimise agronomic practices, promote sustainability, ultimately benefit consumers and the next generation.
Weidong Huang, Country Head of Greater China at Bayer CropScience
SFP efficient farm management solution will accurately calculate the appropriate use of pesticides and fertilisers, reduce chemical waste as well as pollution of soil and water. The application of sustainable farming tools will protect the nature and biodiversity, taking sustainable agriculture into practice.
Furthermore, as SFP’s financial partner, Ant Financial will utilise farming data for risk-control, simplifying farming loan process. It will be beneficial to the farmerswho have been using XAG and Bayer’s products and services. With digital credit system(free of pledge and guarantee), Ant Financial will provide easy (Internet-based) and equal financial support to SFP farmers and participants such as UAS operators.
Bin Peng, Founder and CEO of XAG, statedthat UAS is the key to smart agriculture. XAGIoT and UAStechnology can help farmers improve their understanding of their land and crops. With the help from the agricultural intelligent engine (XAI), farmers can make better decisions, manage machinery easier, reduce labour input, improve efficiency, and create more value.
Ensure Food Safety from Farm to Table
One of the biggest challenges today lies in food safety.SFPwill make sure the agricultural production is traceable and transparent. The customised network of supply chain will be available for consumers to know more about how their food is produced.
Chongjun Tan, Deputy Dean of AliResearch Institute at Alibaba Group, emphasised that: Bayer and XAG, as the core participants and top enterprises in upstream agriculturalindustry, provide guidance and guarantee for safe and qualified agricultural practices. As a core participant in the downstream agricultural industry, Alibaba Rural Taobao will connecthigh-quality foodwith customers, by building a platform between origins andmarkets, in order to optimise the selection of agricultural products for various demandsand reduce circulation costs.
Chongjun Tan, Deputy Dean of AliResearch Institute at Alibaba Group
Justin Gong, Co-Founder and Vice President of XAG, shared that: We collect data from agricultural practices, analyse and apply it in precision plant protection to make the production process quantified and traceable. Avoiding the abuse of pesticides and fertilisers is essential to food safety.
Justin Gong, Co-Founder and Vice President of XAG
SFP’s major mission is to build trust between food producers and their customers. SFP products will be trustworthy because growers will share their knowledge of farming with customers. For instance, customers will be able to know where dofarmers grow the food, how do they grow it and when do they harvest. Compared with expensive organic food, the future products of SFP will meet the demands (e.g. demands for safety and quality) of every customer with reasonable prices.
The First 9 Major Demonstration Farms Worldwide
The conferenceunveiled the first 9 major demonstration farms, including cotton, rice, pear, citrus, navel orange, potato, wheat, grape and so on. In three years, through a series ofcrop management programmes, SPF plans to develop and promotesustainable farming standardsall over the world.