All new JCU ‘ tag team’ off to Is­rael

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS -

AN ex­tra­or­di­nary ground­break­ing tech­nol­ogy which James Cook Uni­ver­sity re­searchers helped de­velop will be show­cased to Is­rael next week as Queens­land agri­cul­tural in­no­va­tors show the world how to farm.

The tech­nol­ogy could one day al­low satel­lites to con­trol cattle and do away with fenc­ing.

Ceres Tag is one of 11 suc­cess­ful Queens­land AgTech start- ups vis­it­ing Tel Aviv, Is­rael – a global leader in agri­cul­tural in­no­va­tion – late next week.

Ceres Tag CEO and man­ag­ing di­rec­tor, David Smith, is plan­ning to mar­ket the Ceres Tag com­mer­cially in 2019, giv­ing gra­ziers across the globe the op­por­tu­nity to mon­i­tor a beast through the du­ra­tion of its life.

The Ceres Tag, de­vel­oped in col­lab­o­ra­tion with CSIRO, is a so­lar- pow­ered ear tag that mon­i­tors food in­take, lo­ca­tion, health, and early warn­ing no­ti­fi­ca­tion of biose­cu­rity break­outs.

Pro­fes­sor Ian Atkinson of James Cook Uni­ver­sity in Townsville, deeply in­volved in the tag’s devel­op­ment, says the Ceres has mas­sive ram­i­fi­ca­tions for Aus­tralia’s place in the global beef mar­ket place.

The abil­ity to pro­vide a cus­tomer with a record of an an­i­mal’s en­tire life, in­clud­ing the feed it con­sumes, dra­mat­i­cally in­creases its value.

On JCU’s Cairns cam­pus pro­fes­sor Wei Xiang, a Pro­fes­sor in Elec­tronic and Foun­da­tion Pro­fes­sor and Head of Dis­ci­pline of Aus­tralia’s first “in­ter­net of Things” En­gi­neer­ing course, says the tag also in­cor­po­rates as yet un­tapped po­ten­tial which could cre­ate vir­tual fenc­ing.

“Vir­tual fenc­ing tech­nol­ogy can do away with any phys­i­cal fence,’’ he said.

Pro­fes­sor Ian Atkinson.

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