Belfast-based CattleEye uses advanced AI in video analytics to deliver the world’s first hardware-independent autonomous livestock monitoring platform. Today, the company announced that it has picked up $2.5 million (nearly £1.8 million) in a seed funding round led by Techstart Ventures along with participation from Paris-based VC Seventure Partners and Turntide Technologies, a Silicon Valley venture backed by Amazon.
Plans commercial launch this year
The investment will be used to bring CattleEye’s autonomous livestock welfare and performance monitoring product to the market. The technology will increase animal welfare levels and reduce carbon emission intensity by around 0.5 tonne per cow per year.
Currently, the technology is being used by a group of pioneer dairy farms along with UK retailers Tesco and Marks &Spencer. In addition, the US Council of Dairy Cattle Breeding (CDCB) is using the technology to explore how CattleEye data can be used in genomic selection to help improve overall hoof health in dairy cows worldwide.
Ryan Morris CEO of Turntide Technologies said: “Our company’s mission is to ‘turn the tide’ on climate change and CattleEye fits that by reducing dairy cow carbon emission intensity using camera technology that requires no hardware or devices to be attached to a cow.”
Terry Canning CEO of CattleEye said: “We are really excited to be bringing the very latest in deep learning and artificial intelligence technology to one of oldest industries in world, livestock farming. This recent investment will give us the firepower to increase productivity, animal welfare and decrease the carbon footprint of millions of dairy cows across the globe.”
Drastic reduction in lameness
CattleEye uses Machine Vision Artificial Intelligence, which provides automatic inspections and analysis for machinery. The first version of the product detects locomotion deviations, which are highly correlated to lameness in dairy cows and is thought to be the first of its kind to undergo successful academic validation by a leading UK university.
A recent survey carried out by Ruminant Health & Welfare described lameness as the top syndrome impacting cattle production and welfare in the UK. Many of the initial farms trialling the solutions have been reporting a dramatic reduction in lameness levels on their dairy farms in a surprisingly short time.