Farmers get fruity and save water with satellite tech

Drought-stricken farmers in South Africa are using satellite data to monitor the efficiency of their water use. Dutch company eLEAF says through using its FruitLook technology, users have reported water […]

By Jonny Bairstow

Drought-stricken farmers in South Africa are using satellite data to monitor the efficiency of their water use.

Dutch company eLEAF says through using its FruitLook technology, users have reported water savings and improvements of at least 10%.

The Western Cape Department of Agriculture is providing the service without charge to fruit farmers – it works by allowing growers to start recognising trends regarding over or under irrigation to understand growth variation across the farm.

By now, six years of data is available, rendering the tool increasingly useful as time goes by.

Nelius Kapp, Director of the Soil Science Consultancy Soil2Root, said: “FruitLook gives you the point in time during the season when things might have gone wrong – no other technology can give you that.”