Precision irrigation company expands product offer in Europe as region’s water fears grow

By Oliver Morrison

- Last updated on GMT

Precision irrigation company expands product offer in Europe as region’s water fears grow

Related tags precision irrigation Precision agriculture Water conservation

WiseConn will launch a new product in Europe to give agricultural operations, farms, and agribusinesses more irrigation management solutions to improve water efficiency, crop yields, and overall farm productivity.

Europe is facing critical challenges due to the effect of climate change, the company says; 2023 was the second-warmest year for Europe with temperatures at 1.2 degrees Celsius above the 1991-2020 average. And extreme weather events, from fires in Greece to floods in Italy, Slovenia, and much of Central Europe, have hit the continent.

Managing water resources and controlling irrigation in an efficient and sustainable way is even more imperative to guarantee a sustainable and productive future for European agriculture.

California-based precision irrigation company WiseConn is therefore to expand its product offering in Europe with the launch of its RF-V1 field device, designed to simplify the control of valves in its DropControl irrigation system, in the second half of 2024.

The company’s patented DropControl technology helps users improve water resource management and adapt to the effects of climate change.

On average, the technology can save up to 30% of water, the company claims. It currently has 20,000 monitoring and control devices installed on more than 300,000 hectares in Chile, the US, Mexico, Peru, Australia, New Zealand and Turkey.

The main challenges of achieving scale in this sector are: data availability and scalability; quantifying plant water stress; and reducing model uncertainties.

DropControl offers field devices which are installed in the ground and connected to each other. These collect data such as weather conditions, soil moisture, and plant humidity, and transmit them to a cloud platform accessible via computers and smartphones. DropControl also enables the activation, deactivation, and adjustment of the irrigation system, consisting of pumps, valves, and other components present in the field. The system can be adapted to any type of crop and size of farms.

Why precision irrigation is crucial in modern agriculture

“Climate change is greatly impacting agriculture, a sector heavily reliant on water,” said Marco Bezzi, Eastern Europe regional manager of WiseConn Europe. “We are increasingly facing prolonged periods of drought, above-average temperatures, and heavy precipitation. The old methods are no longer sufficient to address current challenges. Today, more than ever, agricultural businesses are realizing the need for data. Only with available data, we can assess and understand how to address these issues.

“That's why precision irrigation is so important in agriculture. Through the collection and analysis of data, it allows precise control of water supply, ensuring a constant and optimal level of moisture for plant growth. It also facilitates the direct distribution of nutrients to the roots, improving crop health and productivity. Additionally, precision irrigation enables irrigation programs and methods to be tailored to the specific needs of each crop. Importantly, it helps farmers build resilience and adaptability to the challenges of climate change.”

Cristian Duschner, Western Europe regional manager, added: “Our goal is to support European farmers in conserving water and optimizing resource management in the field, thereby increasing plant health and improving productivity. However, all of this must be accompanied by a technological solution that is not only efficient and of high quality but also easy to use and adaptable to any type of crop. - explains - For this reason, we are constantly striving to enhance our patented DropControl technology to offer even better functionality that meets every need in the field of irrigation and fertigation. Moreover, our technology is highly versatile and lends itself to integration with other innovative solutions from partner companies. In Europe, we are forging essential partnerships that enable us to provide a comprehensive service.”

 

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