Vee Jay’s Kalfresh adopts autonomous tech
11 September 2023
The Jurgens Family are no strangers to thinking outside-the box when it comes to evolving their farming practices.
The Jurgen family are fifth generation farmers who are now in partnership with the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (Queensland) – with Vee Jay’s Kalfresh trialing an autonomous farming system called Robotti.
The only one of its kind in Australia, Vee Jay’s have welcomed Robotti to their farm for the next 12 months.
Previously this precision and driverless technology has been focused on broadacre farming, mainly because for use in horticulture they require a high level of customisation. That’s where our tech savvy team of farmers in Bowen come to the fore.
Vee Jay’s Kalfresh Director Jamie Jurgens said their experience with drones and other farm management software systems has made the addition of a field robot surprisingly easy.
“We’ve familiarised ourselves with the software and successfully adapted it to sweet corn and beans. With various attachments, Robotti has the versatility to be used with tynes to prepare soil, as a planter for sowing seed, and as an inter-row sprayer for weed control,” Jamie explained.
“In terms of commercial viability, we’ll be assessing each task completed by Robotti to see if it’s as good or better than an experienced operator and a tractor. Investment in this kind of automation can go some way to addressing the ongoing skilled labour shortage in Australian agriculture.”
With technical support from Braden Hellmuth from Farm Concepts, Jacob Jurgens has fine-tuned the Robotti set up to a mere 10 minutes.
Robotti and VeeJay’s Kalfresh Showcase will be held on Friday October 13, from 3pm to 5pm at Vee Jay’s Kalfresh, Smiths Road.
Jamie and Jacob Jurgens will be showcasing their field experience with the robotic farming platform.
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