Live at PIX

Welcome, everyone. This is MTech’s AGcelerate. My name is Nikolai Shchetikhin and I have Jim Johnson with me how are you doing, Jim? I’m doing good night. You? Good, but it’s a little bit weird to tell it. You know, this intro second time in a day. Yeah,

[00:24] That’s true. Yeah, we just come off the back of doing our real live Agcelerate show as part of the PIX AMC conference here on the Gold Coast in Australia.

[01:06] And it’s finally sunny because it was a little bit darker. Last couple of days. But you know, we didn’t have much time to look outside because we were here. And we had a booth in here and was quite a lot of workshops and seminars. And, you know, it’s quite an interesting show. By the way, it’s a little bit different in format, which I enjoyed a lot because it was a really balanced mix of everything together. 

[01:43] Yeah. So big shout out to the organizers. Because it’s a lot of people to handle a lot of moving parts. I really enjoyed that the food was right there at the show. So you didn’t have to go anywhere. Really, you know, you stayed at the booth. You meet with people. Here is lunch. Here is the coffee break. It was just phenomenal.

[02:05] You enjoyed the early starts today. Yeah, yeah. Early in the morning on the booth and right through the day. I mean, yeah,

[02:12] yeah, yeah, it’s really nice. And also, for those who wanted to participate, there were evening activities like dinners. So it is also another good chance to socialize and do a lot of networking if you didn’t have enough time throughout the day.

[02:28] Yeah, I guess the cool thing is, most people are staying very close to someone but complex yet. So we have a really nice auditorium full of speakers, some small breakout rooms for the workshops, a really big exhibition area, and the hotel and bars and restaurants, everything in the same complex. So you know, everybody’s here for the four days effectively of the whole thing.

[02:51] Right? So yeah, and what are the main things that we saw at the exhibition? What do you think?

[03:00] I mean, the main thing is that the exhibition, I guess, for me why Yeah, the exhibition was, was strong, well-attended. Lots of companies in here from Europe and all over. So that was enjoyable. But to be honest, my best takeaway was the speakers and the events that I, you know, listened to, and, you know, some really good stuff. They’re talking about technology, talking about how we manage data to machine vision cameras, the use of all that type of thing, and the industry, really strong talks around data technology, and how we can apply that in a practical sense within a poultry house or on a poultry farm.

[03:42] So you think it was a quite big shift towards the future vision? And what is going to happen to the industry in the next couple of years?

[03:53] Yeah, it definitely was, I mean, the theme of the whole exhibition conference was beyond 2020. Now, that might sound a bit odd already.

[04:00] But back to the future,

[04:03] organized that way, and the title was chosen. For the exhibition, we should have happened in 2020. But didn’t because we all know, the COVID pandemic events that stopped that but they kept the same title. And very much we’ve been talking about the future and how we can use technology and data to help drive improvement in performance and welfare. And bird health.

[04:28] So quite a lot of speakers, like you mentioned been talking about the future technologies and data and data management, and a lot of companies on the floor. They were presenting solutions for sensoring analytics for all aspects of the business.

[04:49] Yeah, there was a lot of that. And in terms of takeaway, I suppose the big takeaway for me and I was really it’s an interesting presentation about the future trends in poultry, and, you know, we’re all kind of concerned or some of us concerned about cultured meats, lab meats, you know, the vegan sort of drive veggie burgers and stuff like that. And the impact that we’d have on protein I took away from one of the talks is really that we shouldn’t be worried about. Because really, we’re going to need a significant amount of protein going forward to feed the best part of 10 billion people, that everything’s going to have a place and that that’s fine. And while these meats will grow and become less expensive, they will probably have anything impact on the more expensive beef in cuts of lamb, etc, first, and the future is strong for the poultry sector.

[05:44] Yeah, well, this also gives this peace of mind to the poultry producers and to the pig producers to invest money into new technology and you know, improve efficiencies, because it’s, you know, we’re not getting more land, we’re not getting you to know, and again, this is a, is a challenge, maybe we should get more specialists that are working in the industry because this is important. But we’re getting more people we’re getting more consumption, but limited resources and everything. So definitely we need to grow volume and grow efficiencies within capacities that we already have.

[06:31] For me, there was a real buzz about this week, and the industry is buzzing. Not just because they haven’t met each other for four years, and everyone was together. I think that had a part to play, but just even though we’re in very challenging times as an industry, we’ve got record-high feed prices, you know, it doesn’t look as though it’s going to change anytime soon, we’re coming off the back of two years of the pandemic, we’ve got staff shortages and skill shortages. Virtually every country and Australia is no different wrestling with whether it’s truck drivers or chicken farmers or whether there’s a real shortage of these people. And, you know, there are a lot of challenges in the industry at the moment. But the future really is strong and the mood was, was very, very strong in terms of taking these challenges head-on and running with them. All right.

[07:19] You are also one of the speakers right at the conference, you did a speech about the importance of data analysis. Can you tell us a little bit more about that?

[07:30] Yeah, that was good. I really enjoyed the opportunity to present I mean, there were three, three speakers involved in that session. And we were basically talking about how much data there are massive amounts of data that’s available now in everyday life, but also more so in the poultry industry, from our point of view, and how we use it, or do we use that data effectively at the moment? And, you know, what tools would we have? Do we have to offer the industry terms of a well-structured database, and that being a fundamentally important part of then applying data analytics, and machine learning and reinforcement learning on top of that good database, that that will help improve, not just the performance and cost-effectiveness, but animal welfare and also the birds health over time, and this was really good fun to share that with the people this week.


Yeah, and I talked to some of the people that attended the session, and all the material was received very well. And I think it will make a big impact, especially in this region, in the future, because Australia historically was self-contained. And most of the chicken that’s produced in Australia is consumed in Australia, so there is not much imports. We heard about some frozen duck imports, but it’s a very small fraction of what’s happening in you know, inside the market. And we also when we were preparing for our workshop, you know, we did some of the information just to kind of put everything on the scale of to the world and what’s happening in other regions.

[09:20] Yeah, it’s quite fascinating when you look at some of the statistics of the poultry industry here in the last 30 years, has doubled more than doubled in size. And population growth is growing 50% But we’ve got huge demand and increased production volumes of meat and eggs. I mean eggs per capita is running last year at 249 eggs per capita, which is quite strong but really showing good growth. So the future is, is looking really quite bright for the poultry industry. But it’s about really how we how we accept in a growing industry more sheds more chickens to look after. Have we got enough skills are off people with the right Stockman ship skills to be able to, to utilize and grow these successfully? And that’s where we come in, I guess in terms of trying to look at tools, technology and data management that helps provide tools for the Stockman to do their job better.

[10:19] Yeah. And also, this theme of technology helping to be a better Stockman was in our Agcelerate live event, you know, so we can talk about that a little bit. I think, you know, it was a great experience, because we have mixed groups of people. With us, it was, around more than 100 people. With us, it was a mix of broiler and egg producers.

[10:49] Yeah, a really nice cross-section of producers, farmers, people that are working for organizations and managing farms, people who own their own farms, but on both the ag and boiler sector, as you say, really, really good to challenge some of that to share. It was a very open discussion, as we always have with our guests. But on this occasion, we had about 100 guests, we had a really good one and a half hours of discussion really around data and technology and how they’re using it or the struggles they have with it. And we were fortunate enough to be able to invite David Speller onto the stage. And he was our principal guest today in the AGcelerate show. And he contributed very positively in terms of that whole debate that we’ve just had.

[11:34] Yeah. And, David, if you’re watching this episode, thank you very much again, for your contribution. It was, you know, it was quite interesting to discuss this because David and us are in similar areas of the business, and he’s also a farmer. So he had quite a lot of practical contribution in terms of Applied Technologies. Right. So he, he was talking earlier today also about how he tried all of those different technologies on his farm. Robots, different types of robots, different sensors, cameras, everything. So everything that he’s working with, he’s also trying to apply on his farms.

[12:18] Yeah, it was good to get his insight wasn’t into what works and what doesn’t work, and where we need to continue to do more work with some of these technologies and tools in order for them to have a practical impact and help people on the farm level.

[12:35] Yeah. And also, we had a discussion with people in the audience. And I really like how they reply to the question of the Big Brother, you know, we asked if they consider these connected farms and cameras and sensors and everything to be at threat for, you know, for the job security or for what they’re doing. And it wasn’t received anything like that, right? So they said no, we need this data. When we’re reading, we’re looking at this information. And it was also a comment about sharing information because it’s also important. And again, there are different types of business models when there are farmers or growers and integrators. And sometimes the sharing of information is not very easy between those different parts of the supply chain. So we also try to see whether we can bridge some of the gaps that the industry has.

[13:38] Absolutely. And I think the biggest opportunity really, they came from the floor and the workshop was to share that with nutritionists, and with veterinarians who can then help to collaborate in terms of improving performance and welfare and health. And I think these are key issues that are not just the farm manager has to wrestle with the challenges. But it’s a bit of a team game if you can pull in nutrition pull in vet health, you know, and work together to improve the results on the farm.

[14:07] Yeah. And also, how can I help if I know some information that is coming from different areas of the supply chain? Like if I know in advance? What is the chick quality will be what if it’s an old parent, or young parent? How was the hatch going, you know, so all of those things that impact how I will need to deal with the birds. If I know them in advance, this will really help to optimize the growth cycle.

[14:36] Yeah, sharing information across the different silos is really quite an important way of leveraging improvement across the supply chain.

[14:43] Yeah, we also learned that some of the companies and some of the people from the audience are already using some systems and some data analytical tools, but it’s still quite a lot of opportunity to improve all that because still, there are quite a lot of silos inside many of the organizations, Yeah, exactly, exactly. And which, which is a good thing. Again, this really works nicely with all the predictions and projections that many of the speakers are making during the last couple of days.

[15:21] Yep. It surely does.

[15:25] So it’s, it’s been a really good several days. We really enjoyed being here and meeting everyone at the booth or at the workshops. And yeah, it’s nice to be in Australia. And it’s a really interesting market to work with.

[15:41] Absolutely is we’ve got a few more days here and some really good meetings lined up for the next couple of days before we get back on the plane and head, head back to the northern hemisphere. Looking forward to it.

[15:52] Yeah, and the next stop again, we’ll be VIV in Utrecht.

[15:57] Not too far away. It’s only a week 10 days. Was it the end? It starts on the 31st of May. That’s right. Yes.

[16:02] Okay, you got it right. So make sure you will be there alright, and if you don’t miss any new episodes, please follow us on social media. We’re on LinkedIn Instagram and on Twitter, and see you in the next episode. See you then.

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