Bitwater Farms: Update from Ag showcase alumni
Bitwater Farms is a presenter from the 2016 Ag Innovation that designs and develops equipment to optimize production performance and builds hardware and software for insect farms has been exploring the role of artificial intelligence to improve their subsector of food and agriculture. For CEO Sean MacDonald, this means getting an “extra set of hands” (https://medium.com/@bitwater/an-extra-set-of-hands-for-insect-farming-artificial-intelligence-for-ag-tech-ai4ag-ff35f1fe968e) to turn devices on and off, and facilitate servicing control units to optimize growing conditions for insects as well as recording observations spoken by farm operators.
In addition to developing products for customers in the insect rearing industry, BitWater farms also operates its own insect farm that includes some of the world's largest cricket habitats. At the time of the 2016 Ag Innovation Showcase, Bitwater Farms had just retrofitted their first facility in North Carolina to expand production. Now, CEO Sean MacDonald say’s they “are close to full production capacity for their 5 million live cricket facility.
They are currently focused on two priorities: Building their next facility for 10X the production capacity of their current operations, going from demonstration to a first real commercial scale facility and Advancing machine learning for the insect rearing industry with both software and hardware.
In Sean’s words, “Larta created a culture at Ag Showcase of a small community of serious interactions where everyone is listening and presenters are assumed to be credible and worth listening to. Every conversation presents an opportunity to present one’s story to potential mentors, investors, and customers.”