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SeedSpider Expands Into Weeding: Launches WeedSpider At FIRA USA

  • Palmerston North-based agritech SeedSpider launches its AI-augmented robotic weeder, WeedSpider, to the North American market at FIRA USA, the Agricultural Robotics Forum in California this week.

WeedSpider’s ground-breaking technology is capable of identifying and eliminating weeds in a variety of crops. It provides a much-needed solution to the severe labour shortage problem facing commercial vegetable growers. The technology also reduces the need for weed spray, making vegetable growing much more sustainable and healthier for people and planet.

SeedSpider founder and CEO, Don Sandbrook, says that customers already know and trust the company’s seeding technology which is used to plant around 80 percent of salad greens and baby carrots in the US market.

“With a customer base focused on improving productivity, it was an obvious step for us to expand from seeding to weeding. Our fully autonomous weeding robot offers growers the ability to increase yields and reduce costs. We are confident that this revolutionary technology will change the way we farm and provide much-needed relief to the industry.

“The global demand for food is increasing year on year, which is why innovative solutions like the Weed- and SeedSpider are needed to increase food production, without impacting the health of the planet,” says Sandbrook.

The company’s success started with the development, in 1990, of SeedSpider, a revolutionary seed metering system that now plants an estimated 80 percent of mesclun crops in the US. To help address the increasing challenges of the agricultural sector across the world, the business set about taking its seeding expertise into the world of weed management. After five years of development, it has produced a world-class autonomous robot that traverses crop rows whilst detecting and mechanically eliminating weeds.

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The highly intelligent technology is capable of monitoring and managing the entire weeding and thinning process for growers, providing comprehensive insights into weed density, plant health, and yield analysis through the life cycle of their crops. WeedSpider targets and removes weeds only, rather than indiscriminately hoeing everything, providing a more sustainable and environmentally friendly solution. The robot is also fully autonomous and does not require a tractor, freeing up valuable space on farms.

US Base in Santa Maria

In order to drives sales for WeedSpider and to provide after sales support, SeedSpider has set up a base in California where, along with Arizona, much of the food grown in the US is produced. The company has a facility with three WeedSpider robots on site which it is using in active trials with leading producers in the region.

Bob Sutton, owner Sutton Ag Enterprises, says “Sutton Ag has been an authorised agent of the SeedSpider product for over 19 years, during this time we have widely sold this system. Don has a great reputation, his products are the best on offer, reliable, efficient, and technically advanced.”

Research shows that the demand for food is set to increase by 70 percent in the next 30 years due to population growth. WeedSpider offers an effective solution to this problem, as it is able to work 24 hours a day without requiring any manual labor, making it more cost-effective than traditional methods. With the global market for agricultural robot projected to reach , the addressable opportunity for SeedSpider is large and rapidly growing.

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About SeedSpider

Established in 1990 in Palmerston North, New Zealand, SeedSpider (formerly Greentech Robotics) has specialist expertise in seeding and harvesting high density salad mix and baby carrot crops. Its world-leading systems are driving commercial vegetable growers into the future, delivering unprecedented accuracy, efficiencies, and productivity. SeedSpider’s products include the revolutionary SeedSpider, a complete seeding solution; and the WeedSpider, an autonomous, A.I. augmented robot. Trusted by growers in more than 15 countries, the SeedSpider is the number one choice of seeder for 80 percent of mesclun growers in North America. In a world where every second counts, it is giving growers back their time and improving their bottom line. For more information visit SeedSpider.

Images of WeedSpider can be downloaded here.

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