Bayer, XAG tie up to bring digital farming technologies to small farmers in Southeast Asia, Pakistan

Wednesday, Feb 26, 2020 15:30

Bayer and XAG on Tuesday announce a strategic partnership to help farmers develop digital farming in Southeast Asia and Pakistan. — VNS Photo

Bayer and XAG on Tuesday announced a strategic partnership to bring, promote and commercialise digital farming technologies in Southeast Asia and Pakistan.

They will help smallholder farmers in these regions access digital farm management know-how and technologies, and help them address farming issues like labour shortage, water availability, product stewardship, and safe use, and most importantly, enable them to grow more with less.

“It is estimated that around 500 million smallholder farmers produce 80 per cent of the food consumed in the developing world,” Andre Kraide, the company’s country head for Southeast Asia and Pakistan, said.

“We know that we need to double food production to feed 10 billion people by 2050, but we also know that we will not get more land or resources to do so. This is where digital farming comes into the picture.”

Bayer and XAG will jointly explore commercial collaboration, including distribution of XAG products and solutions through Bayer’s channels, and make joint promotion and market development efforts including by establishing channel service providers together with local partners in these countries.

The collaboration in these regions follows an earlier partnership between them in Japan, announced in October 2019. Under that agreement, the two companies will work together on optimum spraying solutions that combine unmanned aerial systems with innovative formulation technologies.

Countries like Thailand, Vietnam and Pakistan have been the leading exporters of rice in the region, while at the other end of the spectrum, others such as Indonesia, the Philippines and Singapore have been striving towards self-sufficiency.

High demand for corn as both food and feed has also seen an increase in corn imports to supplement domestic production in the regions. Viet Nam and Malaysia lead the region in corn imports, driven respectively by strong consumer demand for pork and poultry.

Despite the diversity, there is a unifying trait in the region: Almost all agricultural production in these countries is done by smallholder farmers.

Following the signing of the MOU, Bayer and XAG will work together on country-specific commercial agreements over the next few months. — VNS

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