What are the competitors of Ecorobotix (Smartweeding robot for farmers) located in the United States of America ?
Hello, and thank you for your question about Ecorobotix's competitors in the US. The short version is, the farm weeding robot industry in USA has been slow to reach the market. Ecorobotix's leading competitor is Blue River Technology. The only other autonomous farm weeding companies set up in the USA are Vision Robotics in San Diego, CA, Farmwise Inc. in San Francisco, CA, and Franklin Robotics in Lowell, MA. Other leading smart weed robot competitors are located outside USA such as, Naio-Technologies in France, and Bosch Deepfield Robotics in Denmark. Below is a deep dive of my findings.
After thoroughly searching agricultural reports, technology reports, trusted media sites, and corporate websites, I have found that the farm weeding robot industry is still developing in the USA. I was able to find information regarding a few startups that have emerged such as Abundant Robotics, and Soft Robotics, but these companies are geared more toward harvesting fruits and berries. I focused solely on smart weeding technology as requested and did not include these competitors in my findings. Therefore, the competitors I have used have been chosen because they offer similar products to Ecorobotix. Overall, the leading competitor is Blue River Technology, which is home to the See and Spray machine/lettuce weeding robot. Furthermore, Vision Robotics, Farmwise Inc. and Franklin Robotics are the only other autonomous farm weeding companies set up in the US.
The state of California produces about 60% of the fresh produce in the US. If immigration is restricted, this will further decrease farm labor supply, which is already depressed. With businesses being at stake, many American farms are turning to modern technology to keep their farms running.
Located in Switzerland, Ecorobotix has a vision to replace labor on farms with robotic technology that respects the environment. Their machines do this by conserving the life of the soil while using minimal energy. They have invented a solar powered, lightweight robot which targets weeds and gives them a precise application of herbicide, which greatly reduces the use of herbicides and leaves the crop herbicide free.
FINDINGS: U.S. COMPETITORS
BLUE RIVER TECHNOLOGY
Blue River Technology, located in Sunnyvale, California, is a private company founded in 2011. It produced an estimated revenue of $3 million in 2015. The company's slogan is Optimize Every Plant and they claim to be creating the next generation of technology for agricultural use. Their latest product to be launched was the See and Spray machine. This smart machine targets herbicide resistant weeds, thus eliminating 80% of the chemicals that would otherwise be used. Like Ecorobotix, Blue River Technology focuses on thinning and smart weeding. Their other products include the Lettuce Bot and drones for phenotyping crop and environmental factors.
VISION ROBOTICS CORPORATION
Vision Robotics is located in San Diego, California. Founded in 1999, they are a private company who are currently led by Bret Wallach as President. Due to their private status, their annual revenue is undisclosed. Vision Robotics use an extensive technology base and their machines incorporate vision-based mapping, navigation systems and localization. Their devices in agricultural mechanization include, The VR Lettuce Thinner, a grapevine pruner, and crop load estimation.
Farmwise Inc. is located in San Francisco, California and is involved in building autonomous robots for agriculture. Also, due to their private ownership, their annual revenue is undisclosed. The company originates from the grandson of a French farmer, CTO Thomas Palomares, who teamed up with an environmental sustainability university graduate, CEO Sebastien Boyer. Their vision is to provide chemical and labor free farming and their slogan is Farming every plant, every day. Their autonomous vegetable weeder works 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, while adapting to different crops seamlessly. The weeder is a cost effective alternative to herbicides, that will also help increase crop yield.
Franklin Robotics, located in Lowell, Massachusetts, has introduced the Tertill, a weeding robot that is solar powered, removes weeds without chemicals and is waterproof. Tertill uses algorithms to detect weeds. Franklin Robotics is a start up company, and currently their product is for garden use. They hope to eventually enable Tertill to monitor plant and soil health. Joe Jones, a member of the team, is also the inventor of the Roomba. No information is provided on their website regarding the date they were founded, company history or annual revenue.
Nanalyze, a site which provides information to investors about emerging technologies, stated in a May 2017 article that the American farm may be fully automated in only a few decades. Forbes also stated in a March 2017 article, that with the rise of minimum wage, and a decreased workforce, many farms are facing operating costs that are unprecedented.
Due to lack of autonomous agricultural companies offering smart weeding robots in the US, I also found the leading global competitors to provide a well-rounded view of the market. Leading smart-weed robot competitors located outside the US are Naio-Technologies in France and Bosch Deepfield Robotics in Denmark.
To wrap it up, the farm weeding robot industry is still developing in the USA. Blue River Technology in Sunnyvale, California, home to the See and Spray machine is currently Ecorobotix's biggest competitor in the US, due to the fact that it offers a similar product to Ecorobotix. Vision Robotics, Farmwise, Inc. and Franklin Robotics are the only other autonomous farm weeding companies set up in the US.
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