France: connected farms and an autonomous dairy machine at the Agricultural Show
Dairy cows in Vire-en-Champagne, in northwestern France, on July 14, 2022. © AFP - JEAN-FRANCOIS MONIER
Text by: Dominique Desaunay Follow
The 59th edition of the International Agricultural Show to be held from February 25 to March 5, 2023 in Paris, Porte de Versailles.
This year, it will exhibit the
in digital solutions for the agricultural world.
Preservation of the environment and internet networking of access to short circuits of seasonal products.
These are the main themes of this new edition.
And among the multitude of digital solutions for developing digital and connected farms, the start-up
offers a fully autonomous dairy processing machine.
This workshop, connected directly to the farm, transforms the milk into a range of dairy products solely at the request of the consumer, who then uses a simple web application to place and retrieve his orders.
The objective of the Grenoble start-up is to recreate this link that once existed when consumers went directly to farms to buy fresh produce.
The manufacture of dairy products directly on the farm will only be done at the request of consumers
," explains Loïc Lecerf, researcher in digital science and founder of Fairme.
As soon as the milking is done, the milk is then automatically processed in this production workshop.
The packages will be made available to Internet users to pick them up at the farm closest to their home using their mobile, using the QRcode generated when they order.
Our ambition is to halve the greenhouse gases released by the food industry with our system.
We give this autonomous workshop free of charge on the farms,”
continues the researcher.
On the other hand, we sell these dairy products.
But as we short-circuit, the collector, the transformer and the large surfaces, we recover margins which we redistribute to the breeders.
In concrete terms, we buy back from the farmer the milk that has been used for the design of his products at between 1.5 and 2 times the cost charged by the mass distribution markets.
To develop Fairme's workshop and online platform, we received funding from the BPI (the public investment bank) but also from Ademe (the French environment and energy) with its funding program for ecological transition projects.
Fairme's objective, by promoting ultra-short circuits, is to reduce the environmental impact of farms.
This digital solution, which required two and a half years of research by around twenty robotics specialists.
Internet of Things and artificial intelligence programs are not intended for heavy agri-food industries, whose milk processing processes are sources of pollution and significant greenhouse gas emissions, but for small farms farmers.
During 2023, Fairme will deploy a network of partner farms in France so that each consumer can collect their ultra-made dairy products close to home.
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