The first AgTech conference in Ireland will be held at the end of the month in Dublin. Irish Tech News spoke with Peter Young, organiser of the conference, AgTech editor of the Farmers Journal and working for the journal for the last 16 years.
When is it on?
29th March, in RDS. Dublin and 2-8PM on 30th, there’s an AgTech village where 10-12 companies are displaying.
This is the first year. What was the inspiration to start it?
There is so much AgTech coming out in the Farmers Journal right now. Established companies are embracing it. Entrepreneurs are creating startups in the space. So many opportunities.
— Herdwatch ® (@Herdwatch) June 9, 2016
An AgTech Summit is a way to bring everyone together and realise the full potential here in Ireland.
Over the years I’ve been involved in different startups and seen how it’s coming with increasing speed into agriculture. Right now there are so many opportunities for people to use AgTech in their businesses. It’s to raise that profile.
What exciting things can people look forward to?
Seeing what’s the cutting edge in AgTech.
— FJ Machinery (@FJMachinery) March 10, 2017
There are speakers from IBM, Intel, John Deere, Dairy Master and Enterprise Ireland all talking about where this is all going.
We have exciting startups attending also. MooCall – developing wearable’s for cows – just got onto the Pearse Lyons AgTech accelerator program (1 of 10 entrants).
Another startup, TreeMetrics, is doing a lot of interesting work. TreeMetrics, branded as ‘The Internet of Trees’, logs how much a tree has grown in the month and added value to the forest.
Ideas are great, but we now need money to fund it. Now, where can we get that money?
Anterra Capital a €125 million venture fund specialising in ag and food are coming over from Holland while Enterprise Ireland and other speakers are there for that.
What opportunities are on offer for people/startups/investors and companies attending?
Opportunity to meet the people doing things in the space. Opportunities for startups to meet investors. Opportunities for people who want to get into the industry.
This conference is all about connecting for the future. Getting the technology side in to create new and different ideas in the space. Ireland is strong in export. It’s so important for us to grasp these opportunities now, so we stay relevant and essential for the customers.
What tips would you give to people attending to get the most out of it?
Identify who you want to talk to before the conference so that you can get your 5 minutes with them.
The latest list of speakers on the second day is on The Farmers Journal.
How can people book tickets / when does it usually sell out?
Go onto www.farmersjournal.ie/booking
When will it be sold out?
Unsure at this stage as it’s the first year, but the early bird tickets end on the 17th March.
Anything else you’d like to add / we should have asked?
For people working in Dublin now, this is a whole new growing area. To make people more aware of this. One of the fastest-growing investment areas right now. There are so many opportunities here.