PS Solutions, Itochu Feed Mills and CKD, In Collaboration with the Livestock Industry, To Start Providing IoT Poultry Farming Services this Fall
—Toward Solving Farming Issues by Combining Scientific Cultivation and Remote Automation Technologies—
A basic agreement has been reached for the joint development, spread and expansion of IoT systems for use with livestock in order to solve issues facing the livestock industry in Japan. The joint development will utilize the technologies of the 3 companies party to the agreement, PS Solutions Corp. of the SoftBank group (hereafter “PS Solutions” of Minato-ku, Tokyo; Chairman & CEO Amane Kito), the feed maker Itochu Feed Mills Co., Ltd. (hereafter “Itochu Feed Mills” of Koto-ku, Tokyo; President & CEO Teruo Fujishima), and factory automation machinery, the actuation device and fluid control valve maker CKD Corporation (hereafter “CKD” of Komaki, Aichi Prefecture; President Kazunori Kajimoto).
The 1st initiative of the group will see the introduction in Fall 2018 of IoT poultry farming services based on the technologies underlying the agriculture IoT solution e-kakashi.
Simply installing different kinds of IoT devices in houses called “open-sided poultry houses” allows IoT poultry farming services to manage information on the environment inside poultry houses and automate work. Being able to remotely control the heat and humidity inside a house as well as its ventilation, and with an eye to the future, control fluids like water or gas—these contribute to saving labor in managing the poultry house and increasing labor productivity. In addition, linking and recording the results of breeding to the control of heat, humidity and ventilation, based on experience and perceptions to date, and then analyzing them via AI (artificial intelligence) helps visualize the expertise of the poultry farmer and organize his/her body of knowledge (e-formalization of poultry farming). This makes a huge contribution to supporting the passing down of each poultry farmer’s exact poultry raising techniques.
In October 2017, PS Solutions and CKD announced the packaging of 2nd-generation of e-kakashi services with functions that use IoT sensors to sense the heat and humidity in agricultural facilities, such as plastic greenhouses, and remotely and automatically control things like curtains and watering of paddies, fields and greenhouses. The system now being announced applies these underlying technologies to the poultry industry and is undergoing proof-of-concept testing in Itochu Feed Mills laboratories (Nasushiobara, Tochigi Prefecture).
*Poultry house that can be controlled via natural ventilation.
(1) Visualization of Environment Inside Poultry House via IoT Sensors
The IoT sensors used with e-kakashi have a history of high durability and stable operation, and when installed in a poultry house, they record conditions inside 24-7, such as temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide, oxygen and ammonia levels, and upload the data to a cloud server. This data can be viewed on a mobile device, such as a smart phone, tablet, etc. And if conditions inside the poultry house change suddenly, an alert can be issued via email or on the control screen.
(2) Remotely Operate Poultry House Curtains via IoT Motors
Simply replacing manual roll-up devices with IoT motors on the curtains that control ventilation allows them to be opened/closed remotely from a mobile device. And they can be installed quickly because they don’t entail extensive work or upfront costs. If linked to IoT sensors in the future, they can operate the curtains automatically.
(3) Mobile Poultry Management Log
Data like weights, numbers dead, etc. can be input via a mobile device, allowing uniform management of data such as breeding results, history of operator actions and the environment inside the poultry house. When accumulated data is analyzed by AI, it helps make intangibles visual, such as the expertise, breeding techniques and know-how of the poultry farmer in managing poultry, which to this point has been based primarily on their experience.
Note that this technology is being exhibited at the CIMCO booth at the International Poultry & Pig Show Japan 2018: May 30 to June 1, Nagoya International Exhibition Hall.
For details on the International Poultry & Pig Show Japan 2018, see http://jlia.lin.gr.jp/ipps/.
■ Prices (+ tax)
IoT Sensors···· In bulk, from thousands of yen to tens of thousands of yen/unit, depending on
what is being measured
IoT Motors···· Monthly usage fee: 18,000 yen/2 motors per building, no upfront costs
*Separate monthly fee of 8,000 yen/contract as a system usage fee.
*Current planned prices, which may change in the future.
(1) PS Solutions provides services whose main focus is IoT systems for the livestock industry. It engages in R&D that combines agricultural information technology and animal husbandry and develops systems optimized to livestock sites based on e-kakashi technology and expertise.
(2) Itochu Feed Mills introduces the services to livestock farmers and supports their use. Itochu provides its large-scale testing environment and raising management know-how, accumulated over many years, to systems development; Itochu also works to coordinate the development of services for solving issues at the livestock site.
(3) CKD brings the fluid control and automation technologies it has fostered in the field of factory automation to bear to provide functions that allow remote control for the optimum environment for breeding livestock. In addition to improving both the quality and productivity of livestock products, CKD works to contribute to improving flexibility in terms of time for livestock workers.
■ PS Solutions Corp. Company Overview
- Head Offices: 4F, Shiodome City Center, 1-5-2 Higashi-Shimbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo
- Chairman & CEO: Amane Kito
- Capital: 100 million yen (fully funded by SoftBank Corp.)
- URL: https://www.pssol.co.jp/
■ Itochu Feed Mills Co., Ltd. Company Overview
- Head Offices: 2-35-13, Kameido, Koto-ku, Tokyo
- President & CEO: Teruo Fujishima
- Capital: 1.91 billion yen
- URL: http://www.itochu-f.co.jp/
■ CKD Corporation Company Overview
- Head Offices: 250, Ouji 2-chome, Komaki, Aichi Prefecture
- President: Kazunori Kajimoto
- Capital: 11,016 billion yen
- URL: http://www.ckd.co.jp/
*The name and logo of SoftBank are trademarks or registered trademarks of the SoftBank Group Corp. in Japan and other countries.
*PS Solutions and the name and logo of e-kakashi are trademarks or registered trademarks of the PS Solutions Corp.
*Other product, company and organization names are trademarks or registered trademarks of the companies concerned.