Visualize how it will be used in a farmer's world I Bridgit Hawkins, CropX
Frustrated by science institutions inability to take innovations into practical applications for farmers and growers, NZ scientist-turned-entrepreneur Bridgit Hawkins explains her ag-tech journey.
Taking the leap from the science world to technology due to her frustration of innovation not being translated to the farmer, Bridgit Hawkins has built a New Zealand irrigation & effluent management ag-tech company, Regen recently acquired by global company.
“It is very hard for ag-tech to be driven from a science institution because the nature of science is to prove it works in a lab. Visualize how it will be used in a farmer’s world to create an actual solution” explains Bridgit.
Taking the leap from the science world to technology due to her frustration of innovation not being translated to the farmer, Bridgit Hawkins share’s her journey in building a New Zealand irrigation & effluent management ag-tech company recently acquired by a global company.
One of this week’s Sarah’s Country’s Change Maker is Bridgit Hawkins, Chief Sustainability Officer at CropX explains :
How her Wellington-based ag-tech business, Regen provides up-to-the-minute monitoring, insights and recommendations to help farmers optimise their irrigation and effluent management practices, saving them time and money while reducing runoff into waterways.
Her participation in the 2017 Rabobank’s FoodBytes!, was a valuable lesson that a product needs to provide a solution that addresses a pain point as opposed to demonstrating some cool thing you can do in a lab.
Rabobank’s FoodBytes! is an annual multi-week programme that helps food and agriculture startups from throughout the world validate and grow their businesses.
She validated her business to be acquired by CropX to provide the scale to grow the technology beyond what she could do in New Zealand.
How we can help farmer adoption is to grow in maturity to realise that no one company has it all nailed it all and collaborate, but farmers also need to support agtech’s development by appreciating the ongoing substantial rate of change.