Dimitra Incorporated: Initiating the New Age of Data-Driven Farming

Jon Trask, Founder and CEO
For smallholder and family farmers, the biggest challenge is productivity. Even though this specific group is responsible for 70-80 percent of the world’s food, they still lack access to cutting-edge technology and data-driven inputs about soil, vegetation and weather conditions. “The smallholder and family farms are greatly underserved technologically and affected by climate change and in many cases extreme poverty. As an AgTech provider, we have designed a connected farmer platform to help the world’s 570 million smallholder farmers,” says Jon Trask, Founder and CEO, Dimitra Incorporated.

Founded in 2019, Dimitra applies advanced technology, including AI, Blockchain, IoT, and Satellite, to provide actionable data that help farmers and governments enrich economies through increased crop yields and healthier livestock. “We start with farm planning, work through soil preparation, planting and crop management all the way downstream to market including export,” says Trask. Each farmer on the Dimitra platform receives Dimitra Points to incentivize their usage of the system. Rewarding behaviors which maximize farming results create an additional incentive to the farmer. This increases farmers’ outputs while reducing their costs and/or mitigating their risks. The farmers can earn points by registering and managing livestock and crops, using the marketplace, and providing data. These points can be converted to Dimitra tokens or can be utilized to purchase agricultural services from other members of the Dimitra Ecosystem. This synergistic usage assists in developing the businesses of ecosystem members and creates a sustainable network economy within the ecosystem.

Dimitra collects data from all feasible and practical sources to feed its machine learning and crop models. These models, each designed to perform specific tasks, produce outputs in the form of recommendations on farm management, alerts, system triggers, and robotic control.

For example, Dimitra sends farmers alerts for the best times to plant and harvest by running time-series analyses over the historical satellite data over previous seasons and combining that data with the current weather conditions/forecast and life cycle developments of crops. Also, Dimitra combines or integrates satellite, airborne, drone, and ground sensor data so as to include the most relevant information to machine learning models, including neural networks, that correlate the spectral signatures detected by spectrometers to the soil or vegetation properties, such as the N, P and K concentrations, pH, soil organic matter, cation exchange capacity, etc. Furthermore, Dimitra also uses other satellite data, including historical data from satellites, which in most cases is freely available (e.g. Sentinel 1 and 2, Landsat 7 and 8, etc.), for the last 5 or 10 seasons, along with current phenological data. This helps determine the precise regions in a field that consistently produce lower yields and recommend fertilization and/or irrigation.

Similarly, by using the above data sources, Dimitra performs regular monitoring of fields to detect pest and disease outbreaks with geographical precision. In these cases, alerts are sent to the farmer to help them spray herbicides or pesticides at just the right time and precise location. Additionally, Dimitra runs crop models to recommend specific doses for spraying.

As an AgTech provider, we have designed a connected farmer platform to help the world’s 570 million smallholder farmers

This type of precision agriculture—of only acting on the specific m2 regions that need spraying and with the proper doses—often results in large savings for the farmer and less contaminated products and environment.

Dimitra focuses not only on assisting farmers in maximizing their yield and quality and minimizing their risks and cost but also providing many efficient services to governments. For example, by using satellite data, it performs analyses for governments regarding the compliance of deforestation quotas or rates, and the compliance of the regular rotation of crops that some governments require to minimize the development of pests and diseases. “In addition to leveraging effective data analytics technologies to improve the livelihood of Smallholder Farmers around the world, Dimitra also makes the resulting mathematical models and statistical inferences available to agricultural and economic research programs around the world. This enables an improved global collaborative effort involving national, corporate, and university-level scientific development,” mentions Trask. “We work with not-for-profits, NGOs and governments to find ways to deliver the mobile tools into the hands of the world’s most needing farmers free of charge.”

With undivided attention to help farmers address the low productivity issue, Dimitra is growing quickly, expanding its system capabilities through project-based developments and its custom consultancy projects. The company is currently working with the OBC Indian Chamber of Commerce, Industries, and Agriculture to deploy its Connected Farmer platform to 1.3 million farms in India in a soil assessment and remediation project. “This project may be the world’s largest soil remediation project. We are starting with satellite analysis of soil and organic content and then adding in data from IoT Sensors and ground based observation to provide baseline analysis feed to development of custom soil planning,” adds Trask. Dimitra is also engaged in an important project in Brazil. The third-largest fruit producer in the world is The Brazilian Association of Fruit Producers and Exporters (ABRAFRUTAS), and its members represent more than 85 percent of the total fruit exported by Brazil. They frequently face challenges with the exportation and traceability of their fruit which affects the overall consumption rate worldwide.

“We are exploring how Dimitra’s technologies (Blockchain, IoT, AI/ML) can be used to increase efficiency in Brazilian fruit farming, logistics, and export,” Trask continues. The National Animal Genetics Research Center (NAGRC) has also selected Dimitra Livestock Management and Genetics Platform to provide base functionality, plus customer-specific customizations to enhance herd performance throughout Uganda. “We are negotiating additional deals with large corporations, governments and not-for-profits in Brazil, Colombia, Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, India, Nepal, Nigeria, and Uganda to further expand our reach and help more smallholder farmers,” Trask concludes.

Dimitra Incorporated

Belize City

Jon Trask, Founder and CEO

Dimitra Incorporated is a global technology company that provides an ecosystem of agricultural technology products to advance smallholder farming performance through mobile technology, IoT sensors, artificial intelligence, blockchain, satellite imagery, and drones

Dimitra Incorporated