Farming software company wants those who toil to reap the benefits

Greg Whitaker - AgrigateOne

Farming software company wants those who toil to reap the benefits

“At the heart of AgrigateOne,” says founder Greg Whitaker, “lies a close connection to agriculture.”

Whitaker grew up on a citrus farm in Limpopo South Africa and he knows firsthand the high stakes that farmers face. That was the impetus to set up an agricultural software company.

“The journey of produce from farm to table is fraught with risks, including extensive travel, numerous trade hands, significant food waste and compliance challenges.”

Right: Greg Whitaker at right with agricultural economist Wandile Sihlobo

Regulatory complexities in the agricultural sector are only increasing, he observes. “Those who have experienced farming life best understand the financial burden of these obstacles.”

He calls it a troubling paradox within the industry that farmers are inherently risk-takers and price-takers. “Even in a good year the profit margins can be thin, and during the bad ones, they are downright punishing.”

AgrigateOne’s goal is to maximize the return to the farm per carton, ensuring that those who toil to maintain a well-functioning farm, he says, reap the benefits.

At the first AgriTech Day in November: Wian Potgieter (AgrigateOne MD UK & Europe), Jackson Dyora (Khula Agricultural Technology), Dante Visser (AgrigateOne Chief of Technology), Michael Stannard (Platform Investment Partners) and Zamokuhle Thwala (AgriKool)


NoSoft acquisition

A critical decision for producers is the selection of farming software, and AgrigateOne’s ‘system-agnostic’ approach allows for flexibility. It aims to fill technological gaps and update obsolete systems.

Following the recent acquisition of NoSoft, a leading packhouse software, AgrigateOne is set to introduce an offline quality control app that directly feeds field data into a larger database (right).

Lauren Smith, head of commercial at AgrigateOne, emphasises their mission to automate data sets, eliminating the need for manual entry.

Right: Greg Whitaker at right with agricultural economist Wandile Sihlobo

“The goal is a seamless data flow across parties, granting supply chain participants access to track the progress of their products through AgrigateOne’s system.”

Last year, the company achieved complete integration of the supply chain, all the way from a Limpopo citrus farm to its UK receiver. Their live dashboard allows for real-time tracking of each pallet’s journey, providing invaluable information for management and stock control.

“AgrigateOne is not just a local success,” Whitaker adds. “It has global applications, as demonstrated by its use by South American producers and worldwide receivers. For example, DSV, an airfreight company, uses AgrigateOne for tracking fresh flower and fruit shipments from Cape Town.”

AgrigateOne’s live tracking dashboard monitors produce at every critical step, facilitating responsiveness to market conditions

A forthcoming campaign in the Netherlands is set to promote AgrigateOne’s tracking capabilities, using layered data sets to help predict market volumes and pricing.

Smith also notes the company’s exploration of large language models (LLMs) to feed data into AI for pricing indications.

Retail emission reporting
From November this year retailers have to report on their Scope 3 emissions: the carbon footprint of all products from every place of origin included in their financial statements.

It is a pressing concern to AgrigateOne and, along with the regulatory frameworks to address climate change, issues that Whitaker follows passionately.

“With upcoming regulations requiring retailers to report their Scope 3 emissions, AgrigateOne is at the forefront, developing an index to measure carbon emissions and assisting clients in navigating these new reporting landscapes.”

The farmers’ panel at the AgriTech Day: Greg Whitaker, Piet Smit (Komati Group), Jan-Louis Pretorius (Groep91 Uitvoere) and Mbali Nwoko (Green Terrace)

He continues: “AgrigateOne stands as a beacon of innovation in the agricultural sector, transforming data into actionable insights and guiding farmers, exporters and all other supply chain stakeholders towards a sustainable and profitable future.”

Publication date: 
Author: Carolize Jansen

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