Introducing Specific SDGs Initiatives by Japanese Agricultural Machinery Manufactures

This is the article translated from TSUCHIKAU blog.
You can find the original post (in Japanese) here: SDGsの具体的な取り組みをご紹介 | 農業メディア TSUCHIKAU(ツチカウ)

Kubota’s Efforts:

First of all, Kubota, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of agricultural machinery, is making efforts.

Based on the concept of “Challenge for a prosperous future for the earth and people,” Kubota is undertaking a number of initiatives around the world.

For example, in Africa, we are developing a tractor that is fuel-efficient and durable, and responding to the needs of orchard farmers. In Asia, we are developing a multipurpose tractor that can withstand the harsh local conditions with its traction and excellent durability.

These efforts have mainly contributed to the elimination of poverty in Goal 1 and the elimination of hunger in Goal 2.

Although not directly related to agriculture, we are contributing to Goal 3, “Health and Welfare for All” and Goal 6, “Safe Water and Toilets for the World” by deploying septic tanks that provide access to clean water.

We are also engaged in environmental and social initiatives, and are committed to all 17 targets.

Please take a look at the page “Kubota and SDGs”.

NEC’s Initiatives

Next is NEC’s efforts as an electrical manufacturer.

In Mozambique, Africa, where agricultural productivity is low and income is low, the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) introduced an electronic money platform to its farm support program, which distributes coupons for the purchase of high-quality seeds and fertilizers. By digitizing paper coupons, the utilization rate of coupons increased, and the smooth distribution of agricultural materials was realized. In addition, FAO’s guidance on agricultural improvement based on coupon use history has been made possible, improving agricultural productivity and income.

These efforts are primarily contributing to Goal 1: Eliminating Poverty, Goal 2: Eliminating Hunger, and Goal 9: Building the Foundation for Industry and Innovation.

Together with Kagome, the company conducts growth simulations based on meteorological and soil data obtained from various sensors to predict the yield and harvest time, providing advice on farming in accordance with the land, optimizing the use of water, fertilizer, agricultural chemicals, and maximizing the yield. In addition, we are working to solve social issues such as reducing food loss and waste, efficient use of resources, and reduction of CO2 emissions by improving the efficiency of cargo collection based on the prediction of the harvest volume and the proper harvest time, equalizing the operation rate of processing plants, and improving transportation efficiency.

These efforts have contributed mainly to Goal 12, “Responsibility to Make” and Goal 13, “Concrete Measures against Climate Change.”

NEC is also engaged in a number of other initiatives, including many case studies.

Activities of inaho

The last is the initiative of Japanese venture company inaho.

Unlike Kubota and NEC, I think this company has never heard of before.
Although we haven’t made any specific efforts yet, we were selected as one of 10 companies to participate in the Japan preliminary of Extreme Tech Challenge (XTC), the world’s largest startup contest for social entrepreneurs working on SDGs.

XTC is the world’s largest startup competition for entrepreneurs tackling global challenges. Held since 2015, the contest, in collaboration with the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted at the United Nations Summit, identifies and supports innovators who use technology to solve the greatest challenges facing the earth and humankind. It has attracted over 6,000 entries from around the world every year. Since then, participating companies have raised a total of 44 billion yen.

What does Inaho do?

The business outline states, ‘To provide an agricultural production platform centering on a vegetable harvesting robot. Business development using AI. Providing solutions for primary industries.’

The current service is based on a system in which an automatic vegetable harvesting robot using artificial intelligence is lent to farmers, who pay usage fees based on the harvest without initial investment and maintenance costs.

The robot uses image recognition to determine when to harvest crops, and the robot arm automatically picks them up. Since the harvesting object can be set in cm units, the robot seems to be able to harvest automatically according to the shipping standard.

If you are interested in inaho, please visit our website.

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