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Syngenta Launches World’s First Satellite Imaging Tool to Detect Nematodes in Soybean Crops

Every year microscopic nematodes cause as much as $150 billion in damage and crop losses by destroying the roots of plants. However, Syngenta Crop Protection is launching the first commercial digital solution in the world to diagnose infestations in soybean crops by using satellite imagery to analyze photographs.

This first-of-its-kind innovation is the result of years of collaboration between Syngenta and Swiss agtech startup Gamaya SA – a spin-off from Switzerland’s Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne – and marks a breakthrough in pest management.

Being first marketed by the company in Brazil, the digital tool uses a proprietary algorithm to analyze images of fields obtained by satellites, identifying areas of infestation and concern, and estimating the potential losses caused by the parasites. Farmers can then make quick adjustments to their management protocols to avoid further damage, optimize their inputs, and improve sustainability on their farms.

Brazil accounts for about 35 percent of the world’s soybean supplies, and suffers estimated losses in soybean production each year amounting to more than $5.4 billion, or as much as 30 percent of the country’s yields in highly infested regions.

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