GrainGrowers addresses farmers’ data use concerns in an Agtech first

By November 20, 2017May 22nd, 2018Media Releases - November 2017

National grain farmers representative body, GrainGrowers today responded to key early findings from the Rural Research and Development Corporations’ project designed to capitalise on the big data opportunities for Australian agriculture, Accelerating precision agriculture to decision agriculture1.

GrainGrowers Commercial Manager Nick Bryant said that two of the top findings2 released to date – the need for leadership in the ag technology sector and for managing trust and legal barriers to adoption of new technology by farmers – had been recognised and acted on by the company.

“These findings echo our own recent findings from an extensive technology survey of members,” Mr Bryant said.

“GrainGrowers understands that the way grower data is handled inside digital farm decision support systems, like our own product, ProductionWise, is very important to them.

“Our survey found that around 42 per cent of respondents listed complexity and a lack of trust as the main reasons for not adopting new farm technology.

“GrainGrowers has listened to our users and in an industry first in the agtech sector we are releasing a set of Data Use Principles that articulate in an easy to understand, fair and transparent way how we manage grower information and other data inside ProductionWise,” Mr Bryant said.

“Growers are telling us loud and clear that they need simplicity, transparency, fairness and a reasonable level of control over the way their data is handled inside technology systems like ProductionWise. Our Data Use Principles are designed to address these concerns in a simple, one-page format,” he said.

The ProductionWise Data Use Principles cover areas such as:

  • what information GrainGrowers collects in ProductionWise
  • what types of information is shared and with whom
  • GrainGrowers’ policy of not selling grower data, and
  • what users can do to access and change their personal information.

“We believe we are leading the way in the agtech sector by setting out how growers’ data is used and managed inside our agricultural technology products like ProductionWise,” said Mr Bryant.

“We are very focused on ensuring that grain growers and other users of our system know that we take their privacy seriously and we hope that our Data Use Principles demonstrate this commitment,” he said.

In addition to ProductionWise, GrainGrowers is involved in the delivery of multiple agricultural decision support products including GrainVantage, Spraywise Decisions and Cotton Map that have been used to improve efficiency by more than 11,000 farmers and agronomists in Australian and New Zealand farming businesses since 2008.

The GrainGrowers ProductionWise team is currently rolling out some major upgrades to ProductionWise including a new online marketplace for farm decision support designed to overcome the cost barrier by providing users with flexibility and choice in selecting only the decision support tools they need – and for the time period they need – to solve their farming problems.

The ProductionWise Data Use Principles are available on the website: https://productionwise.com.au/productionwise-data-use-principles/

1Note to editors: Accelerating precision agriculture to decision agriculture (P2D) is a partnership project between 13 of Australia’s 15 rural research and development corporations (RDCs), led by CRDC and including GRDC, MLA, Dairy Australia, SRA, AgriFutures Australia (RIRDC), AWI, HIA, APL, Wine Australia, FWPA, AMPC and FRDC, plus other research partners.

P2D is made up of six projects. The sixth is the Economic Assessment by Mick Keogh and Richard Heath, Australian Farm Institute, which is expected to be released this month.

Findings of the project will be presented at stakeholder consultations in coming months.

2These findings were drawn from the report by David Lamb, University of New England, Accelerating Precision Agriculture to Decision Agriculture, September 2017.


Chris Walker

T: 0408 014 843

E: chris.walker@graingrowers.com.au