Cargill Inc. is stepping up its focus on digitalization and analytics. The recent launch of its Dairy Enteligen(TM) data collection, management and analysis platform in Italy and Spain and the subsequent roll-out in the U.S. and other geographies is a clear sign of the company’s intentions to use big data to help dairy farmers become more productive and increase their ability to foresee. Thanks to the application, all aspects of the cows’ living conditions – from feed formulation and milk productivity to welfare – will only be a click away on smart tablets and computers.
At the launch a few weeks ago, Ricardo Daura, global product line director, digital insights, Cargill Animal Nutrition, said: “In today’s agricultural economy, dairy farmers are looking for real-time information and insights to help them make the best decisions to run a profitable and efficient farm, while also ensuring their animals are properly nourished. We believe Dairy Enteligen™ has the power to fundamentally transform the dairy industry by unlocking the power of data to guide farmers’ decision making right from their fingertips”.
Daura explains to Feedinfo News Service: “A dairy farm operation is objectively complex; farmers have access to multiple sources of disconnected data which offers high potential for data technologies and a very forthright valuable application. Besides, the fact that investment done in the herd will have to be sustained during several years while running the business optimally to obtain returns brings the opportunity through data systems to safeguard farm operation control and the ability to optimize long term work. When we have the opportunity to have every animal taken care of, we increase its own welfare and consequently, obtain higher returns”.
According to Daura, Dairy Enteligen™ can connect every component into one intelligent analytic platform and assist dairy consultants and farmers to identify the right turning point in a specific farm and define a course of action. The system provides insights to be transformed into actions.
“There are two key benefits for farmers coming from Dairy Enteligen™”, Daura says. “One is related with multisource data analytics which will highlight what should be the focus in each specific moment recognizing the critical turning points of an operation whether those come from milk production, nutrition, or animal comfort or health. The second one is that this advice is done considering a specific farm and the unique circumstances for that farm, which ultimately brings a straight forward action plan to enhance farm productivity and profitability. This enables better returns will be dictated by each customer business goals, farm situation and market conditions”.
Be it in Italy, Spain, the U.S., or elsewhere in the world, Dairy Enteligen™ is aimed at farmers who leverage systems and the use of software and equipment.
“We will focus on any progressive farmer who has interest in unlocking the value of his/her herd via a connected system”, Daura comments.
“The power of this system, leveraged with our local consultants and representatives can enable incredible results, and we are confident that starting now, we can optimize a farms operations to enhance productivity via the use of data and insights”.
In a recent interview with Bloomberg, Daura illustrated his point by saying that an 11.7% increase in milk production in Italian farms using the new application was noticed.
Data solutions application in animal nutrition and production differ across different species and regions. And Cargill is seeing opportunities to connect existing and new sources of data to ease the process of making the right decision at the right time and more precisely identifying what is the most profitable turning point in each specific farm under each circumstance.
“We now are only laying strong foundations to architecting the future of dairy farming, and that future includes new technologies like new sensors on farm and AI agents, which will become integral parts of our data system”, Daura says. “We are actively exploring some of these technologies which will reshape how we use technology in dairy farming. Within the next year we have confidence in coming with partnership and ventures around new technologies that will become part of our solution and deliver new value to customers”.
Dairy Enteligen™ is Cargill Animal Nutrition’s first release in the market but more applications in livestock and aqua, as well as new solutions for dairy farming and feeding, are expected to be delivered by the company moving forward.
For example, in warm water aqua, the industry can soon expect the launch a new product, called iQuatic, which will be initially launched in Central America, with plans to roll it out globally shortly thereafter.
Cargill is a strong believer of data and digital innovation as disruptors for the farm of the future. The company sees itself as uniquely positioned to bring the combined power of a connected system and its consultative approach to enhance all parts of the animal production chain.
Sri Kantamneni, managing director, digital insights, Cargill Animal Nutrition, explains why big data has become a business driver: “Cargill Animal Nutrition has had a long history of very advanced capabilities in data technologies and applications. Our Cargill Nutrition System streamlines nutrition data from ingredients, labs, animal models and formulation into an integrated system to provide customers with the most precise and optimal diet formulation. Digitalization and analytics is a major focus for Cargill and one of the ways we can enable our customers to thrive”.
Information is revolutionizing decision making, and Kantamneni is fully aware that Cargill can play a critical role in the speed and quality of decision-making in the animal farming sector.
“As we continue to invest in a connected system, our focus remains on helping solve the needs and problems of our customers. This means not only increasing the sources of automated data collection, but also applying new and powerful technologies like machine learning and augmented or artificial intelligence to enhance decision making that are predictive in nature”, he adds.
“We will keep investing in data technology to harness new technologies and big data platform to deliver powerful insights”.