The strategic alliance will allow to pioneer new innovations in agriculture and support rural communities


Land O'Lakes and Microsoft have collaborated to develop connected AgTech platform. (Credit: Microsoft)

US-based farmer-owned agricultural cooperative Land O’Lakes has collaborated with Microsoft to develop a connected AgTech platform to better serve the farmers.

The multi-year strategic alliance will help to pioneer new innovations in agriculture and boost the supply chain, as well as expand sustainability practices for farmers and the food system.

Land O’Lakes president and CEO Beth Ford said: “The data-based, precision agriculture tools that we are building with Microsoft will provide the edge they need, but unreliable or nonexistent high-speed internet in rural areas keeps these tools out of reach for many.”

Based on Microsoft Azure platform, the AgTech platform will combine Land O’Lakes’ portfolio of AgTech tools such as WinField United’s R7 Suite, Data Silo and Truterra Insights Engine under one unified architecture.

With the support of Azure and Azure FarmBeats, the Land O’Lakes will obtain insights to provide farmers with intelligent agriculture solutions for more productive with their time and resources.

The platform will allow to correctly guide where and when farmers should take action on their field for suitable growth conditions, as well as maximise yield potential by planting the right seed varieties, optimise fertiliser investments, and ensure accurate output ratio to meet demand properly.

The partnership will also advance an aggregator of data with Data Silo, and leverage Microsoft Azure and its AI capabilities and insights from WinField United Answer Plot test fields for better predictable decisions to place crop inputs such as seeds and treatments.

Microsoft will also work with Land O’Lakes to create a Digital Dairy solution

Microsoft will also work with Land O’Lakes to create a Digital Dairy solution to gather data from farms with poor internet coverage. It will also apply AI capabilities to deliver data-driven insights for dairy producers.

In addition, the companies will work to integrate the new capabilities into the Truterra Insights Engine to create a unique soil health platform.

It will help farmers implement better practices to enhance the quality and function of their farms’ soils, estimate the natural resource and economic benefits of the new practices, generate soil carbon credits, and connect to soil carbon markets that sell certified credits to buyers.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said: “Land O’Lakes is one of the most important food suppliers in the U.S., and our nation’s farmers and consumers rely on its ability to rapidly adapt to changing market forces through innovation.

“Through our partnership, we will apply the power of Azure and its AI capabilities to help Land O’Lakes solve some of the most pressing challenges facing the industry and bridge the divide between rural and urban communities.”

In March this year, Japanese tractor and heavy equipment manufacturer Kubota collaborated with Microsoft to enhance its digital transformation.