Use of robots and AI in greenhouse horticulture

Use of robots and AI in greenhouse horticulture

Robotics and AI are not panaceas for solving labor shortages or other product-related problems. But in the next decade, robots and crop support software will take over certain tasks in the high-tech greenhouse.

Report summary

Growers will not produce more cheaply because of robotization and digitalization, but mostly differently. Managing larger, more international companies will become easier, management skills will change, and the cooperation with suppliers and customers will become closer. Pests can also be dealt with earlier, more sustainably or more precisely. The quality of the final product may also improve. All of this has great potential value that is difficult to estimate.

Lack of, and high costs of, labor are a major driver of robotization.

The knowledge and skills of horticultural companies are indispensable in developing robots and AI. For robotics players, connecting with the right growers, quickly adapting products based on experience, service and convenience are success factors.

There are several options for growers to adopt innovations in robotics and AI. From really coinvesting in the companies to cautiously trying them out using a (trial) subscription.

In the more distant future, a completely different automated cultivation system is a smarter solution for certain crops. But this requires substantial investments and many adjustments, e.g. in varieties.

Robotization and digitalization also have potential drawbacks. Consider the growing dependence on large software companies, cyber risks, less flexibility, negative consumer perception, and less diversity of companies and products.

Download the full report.

Source: RaboBank

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