Digital Harvesting Assistant


About the Technology

“Harvest Ant” is a near-field communication (NFC) based system developed to monitor the efficiency of harvesting activities and crop yield.

Each picker is assigned a uniquely labelled Digital Assistant (DA). The picker uses the DA to tag onto Smart Tags to record the task, row number and crate number prior to picking. The crates are then scanned and weighed by the Smart Scales. Recorded data is date/time stamped, creating a traceable record of who picked the produce, the rows from where it was picked , the time taken to harvest, the temperature at harvest, and the weight of the produce.

The Trial

The Harvest Ant system was trialled for monitoring the harvesting of baby cucumbers in a protected cropping system from March to September. Each picker was given a digital assistant and trained in the use of the Harvest Ant system. Daily harvest data was collected using the mesh radio system, Smart Scales and Gateway.

This case study provides an overview of findings from the technology trials including:

  • Background
  • What the technology is
  • How the trial was done
  • Results
  • Cost/benefit analysis
  • Grower feedback
  • Additional considerations that should be taken into account when deciding whether to utilise the technology

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Presentation of this case study is for information purposes only. It does not constitute a commercial endorsement by the stakeholders of the Bundaberg Agtech Hub.

Trials conducted by Hinkler AgTech Initiative

The CQUniversity Hinkler AgTech Initiative was funded through the Hinkler Regional Deal. The Hinkler Regional Deal is a collaboration between the Australian Government, Bundaberg Regional Council and Fraser Coast Regional Council.

CQUniversity will not be liable for any damage arising directly or indirectly from reliance on information obtained from this document. It is provided in good faith without express or implied warranty. * All published costs and other details are current as of February 2023.