Israeli and Colombian agriculture tech startup Demetria has released a new artificial intelligence-driven (AI) application designed to verify the viability of young coffee seedlings.
Intended to improve efficiency and accuracy in coffee nursery operations, the new application has been used to effectively scan and classify over 240,000 seedlings through a pilot program with coffee giant Nespresso.
Through that relationship, Nespresso distributed verified seedlings to a network of coffee farmers in Colombia.
Demetria closed a $3 million initial funding round to support its AI-driven green coffee quality analysis system earlier this year. The same handheld sensor used in Demetria’s core coffee system is used for the seedling application, which Demetria contends can weed out human error in determining plant grafting viability.
“This technology has a significant impact in that it lowers the production cost of seedlings, increases the availability of high quality seedlings, and helps farmers ensure that the seedlings they plant would have the expected survivability once planted in the field,” Felipe Ayerbe, Demetria’s CEO and cofounder, told Daily Coffee News. “The genetic base for these seedlings means that farmers can obtain better quality coffee that Nespresso buys at a premium.”
As it presently seeks to build momentum among green coffee buyers and producers alike, Demetria is piloting additional apps designed to take some guesswork and subjectivity out of coffee analysis.
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One potential tool currently being developed in partnership with the Colombian Coffee Growers Federation (FNC) might help farmers and others in the supply chain better determine green bean quality in relation to prices.
The startup is also partnering with the Colombian coffee division of Volcafe/ED&F Man, Carcafe, for a “Matchmaking” app designed to codify specific profiles sought by clients and match those with green beans.
Said Ayerbe, “We are developing a host of other applications that open bottlenecks in daily processes to prospect and produce higher quality coffee and drive efficiency across the coffee value chain.”