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Bell MTS, University of Manitoba launch IoT in agriculture initiative

May 30, 2017  

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Bell MTS today announced a $500,000 contribution to the University of Manitoba’s Front and Centre campaign to launch a new initiative: the Bell MTS Innovations in Agriculture Program, providing students with financial assistance to develop Internet of Things (IoT) technologies for application in agriculture and food services.

“Enabling broadband access to real-time operational data of all kinds, IoT applications can help improve the production of food resources through managing the location and performance of farm machinery, remote analysis of soil samples, field conditions, seeding rate and crop health, and monitoring of storage and processing operations,” a release from the two organizations stated.

“IoT refers to the real-time exchange of data between physical things. By connecting the physical world through fiber and wireless broadband networks using sensors and other measuring and operational devices, IoT is transforming the way we live and work.”

Agricultural production represents an estimated 5% of Manitoba’s gross domestic product (GDP) and the sector accounts for an estimated 33,000 jobs in the province.

“Working on IoT solutions within the agriculture, food and nutrition sectors not only offers our students a unique skills development opportunity that will support their future career opportunities, it is critical to the advancement of our agriculture and food economy,” said Karin Wittenberg, dean of the faculty of agricultural and food sciences.

The $500,000 investment will go towards mentorships, research funding, and access to new co-operative education opportunities.