In growing numbers, airports, stadiums, schools, and other public places are making use of facial recognition technology for surveillance and security purposes. This past week, news outlets reported that in the city of Zhengzhou, China’s police are using sunglasses with built-in facial recognition at train stations to scan travelers during the upcoming Lunar New Year celebration.
Now, dairy farmers are “mooving” into the world of imaging technology to monitor the health and wellbeing of their cows.
Cargill and Cainthus, a Dublin-based machine vision company, are reshaping how farmers make decisions for their livestock through a strategic partnership that will bring facial recognition technology to dairy farms across the world.
Cainthus’ proprietary software uses images to identify individual cows based on hide patterns and facial recognition, and tracks key data such as food and water intake, heat detection, and behavior patterns. The software then delivers analytics that drive on-farm decisions that can impact milk production, reproduction management, and overall animal health. If something seems off with Bessie, a health alert can be sent directly to the farmer. What used to be a manual process that took days or weeks can now take place in near real-time.
“We are enthused about what this partnership will mean for farmers across the world,” said David Hunt, president and co-founder, Cainthus. “Cargill is a natural partner for us, given their focus on bringing a world-class digital capability to the market and their understanding of how technology will truly help farmers succeed. We think this partnership will be a game changer for farmers because it will allow them to efficiently scale their business.”
The goal of the technology is to help farmers improve their farm’s efficiency, enhance animal health and wellbeing, reduce animal loss, and ultimately increase farm profitability. Dairy farmers may be the first to benefit, but Cargill and Cainthus plan to expand the technology to other farmed species, including pigs, chickens, and fish over the next several months.