Home » Trapview: Can an AI-powered insect trap solve a $220 billion pest problem?

Trapview: Can an AI-powered insect trap solve a $220 billion pest problem?

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CNN business

Pests destroy up to 40% of the world’s crops each year, $220 billion Economic losses, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Trapview is harnessing the power of AI to help tackle this problem.

A Slovenian company has developed a device that catches and identifies pests and acts as an early warning system by predicting how they will spread.

Matej Štefančič, CEO of Trapview and parent company EFOS, said:

Climate change will cause species spread, disrupting the migration patterns of highly destructive pests. desert locustStephancic hopes to help farmers save their crops through faster and smarter interventions.

Trapview’s device uses pheromones to attract pests and capture them with an internal camera. The AI ​​can cross-reference the images with Trapview’s database and identify over 60 species, including the codling moth that plagues apples and the bollworm that can damage lettuce and tomatoes. Once identified, the system incorporates location and weather data, maps the insect’s possible impact, and sends findings to farmers via an app.

A single trap can cover an area from a few hectares to more than 100 hectares, according to Stephancic, depending on the terrain and crop value. Devices come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and systems are tailored to crops and landscapes. Štefančič says that one insect can sometimes set off an alarm. In other cases, you can catch hundreds of insects and still have nothing to worry about.

Trapview’s app can also calculate when and where it’s best to use pesticides. Štefančič says Trapview can significantly reduce the use of chemical sprays and the need for farmers to visit the fields. By reducing the emissions generated by He argues that the technology will also help the climate, for farmers who drive to their fields or who are involved in the production and transportation of pesticides.

Trapview is one of many automated pest detection systems.

said Steve Edgington, biopesticide team leader at the Center for Agriculture and Bioscience International, a nonprofit intergovernmental organization.

About two million tons of pesticides are used each year, Edgington explains.

“Reducing the use of pesticides on agricultural land is very important if we are to produce food sustainably and face the problems of pests, diseases and climate change,” he adds.

Trapview currently employs 50 people and received a $10 million investment in September. This is not the only use of AI in pest control. Developed by Pessl Instruments iScoutSolar Powered Insect Trap and Camera Identification System, FarmSense flight sensor Listen for pests and use AI to identify pests by flapping sound.

Solutions like Trapview represent a shift away from traditional pest management, which is usually based on a reactive rather than a proactive approach, according to FAO Agriculture Officer Buyung Hadi.

“Predictive techniques, when combined with safe and sustainable solutions such as biological control, can facilitate the transition to more sustainable crop protection,” said Hadi, adding that the quality of data that these techniques will yield is important.

“We need to be very careful in formulating the messages and recommendations that emerge from predictive technology so as not to cause panic among farmers, which could result in the very indiscriminate use of pesticides that we would like to avoid in the first place. You have to pay,” he adds. .

According to Trapview, more than 7,500 devices have been sold in over 50 countries since its launch in 2012. It focuses on Italy, France, Spain, the United States and Brazil and covers a variety of crops including grapes, tomatoes, olives, nuts and cruciferous plants. , cotton, sugarcane.

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