Digitization is the key to food security – Manila Bulletin

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Digitization is the key to Southeast Asia’s food future for tackling safety and waste issues, according to an enterprise application software provider.

During the virtual briefing “A Growing ASEAN, A Hungry Population: Building Resilient and Sustainable Food Supply Chains,” enterprise application software provider SAP addressed the issue of food safety and waste. The event brought together business leaders from agriculture, manufacturing, distribution and logistics, including packaged fruit and snack maker Dole Asia Holdings and agri-food company Loc Troi Group.

It was pointed out during the forum that about a third of all food produced – 1.3 billion tonnes – is lost or wasted each year, contributing 8 to 10 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, according to Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). .

Verena Siow, President and CEO of SAP South East Asia, stressed that giving food producers the right tools to meet the growing demand for food and tackle food waste are key to tackling the challenges of the region – from areas where technology and digitization play an essential role. .

“For starters, we need to make better use of the food we produce to minimize waste. Food security and sustainability are more of a resource management challenge, where technology can be an agent of change, ”said the leader.

Forecasting demand with big data can deliver food in a timely manner, improve supply chain efficiency and reduce food scarcity, Siow added.

“Minimalism is at the heart of our green habits towards zero food loss,” noted Leonardo Rabelo, CFO of Dole Asia Holdings.

“Technology in agriculture or Agtech is vital in shaping our progressive and proactive waste reduction agenda,” he explained.

“The on-farm Internet of Things (IoT), phase tracking and end-to-end digitization will be the new superpowers to improve the quality and overall value of our products and reduce waste. “

Dole manufactures mashed bananas and frozen bananas to recycle and achieve zero fruit waste.

Digitization is also helping food producers, not just manufacturers, especially in ASEAN countries dependent on imports and exports.

Farmers and food producers increase their yields and get better real-time data on the health of their crops thanks to increased technological and financial support.

At present, Loc Troi is working with more than 200,000 rice farmers in Vietnam, targeting 1 million farmers in 2024, in addition to an annual rice milling capacity of 6 million tons, said managing director Nguyen. Duy Thuan.

“We are leveraging our agricultural knowledge base to develop new crop varieties and resource-efficient farming methods, as well as the application of technologies such as drones and hospital mobile applications to provide advice to rice farmers and fruit, ”he explained.

They use artificial intelligence (AI) to predict yields, pests and disease risk.

In addition, “Loc Troi is working with farmers to obtain crop planting area codes and traceability through QR codes to promote Vietnam’s agricultural products to international markets,” Nguyen said.

Loc Troi underwent a digital transformation with SAP S / 4HANA in 2020 to standardize processes to follow international best practices, improve planning capacity, track his business activities and maximize the competitiveness of agriculture. .

As ASEAN food businesses globalize, a resilient food value chain is vital for growth.

This means increased integration and collaboration between partners, as well as digital supply chains that provide visibility into their partners’ operations and theirs.


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