Analysis by Peter Roberts.
There is a bit of a myth in Australian high technology circles that local manufacturing is too hard, but you have got to feel for those commercialising IoT enabled agriculture product, Ceres Tag.
Ceres Tag is a smart ear tag for the livestock industry that uses technologies such as GPS and motion sensing to monitor health and track the position of livestock.
Developed in association with CSIRO, it is being rolled out in test numbers on cattle stations but, according to Ceres Tag CEO David Smith, the question of local versus overseas manufacture is unsettled.
Smith told @AuManufacturing the company had not chosen a commercial manufacturer yet.
“When we have talked to Australian manufacturers, they have indicated that our quantities are too big and would sub contract it overseas, most in Asia,” he said.
“We would like to manufacture in Australia but apparently it is not possible in the global scale required.”
One would hope the company has searched high and low for a manufacturing partner, but at this stage of its development the most important issue for Ceres Tag is its acceptance by the market.
It is understandable that manufacturing locally, while desired, is not the main game.
But surely in 2018 we have passed the point where Australia’s pool of manufacturing capability and entrepreneurship is too small to support this device.
We have small and large run electronics manufacturers, companies who work with start-ups to commercialise their products, and technology skills aplenty.
I am particularly excited about this product because of its IoT capabilities. Linked to existing farm management software the system monitors breakouts by animals, for example, notifying your mobile phone if stock stray too far.
We really need to make this sort of thing in Australia.
Any manufacturer want to get in touch with David Smith – just let me know.
Picture: Ceres Tag.
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