4D4F submission: Plinio, the stable kit

COP prize submission. Author: Cynomys - Date: September 26, 2018

Cynomys devotes itself to environmental protection through the customised use of IoT sensors. Our services are aimed at preserving the environment and improving human health. Today Cynomys focuses its attention on the FoodTech and Smart Farming sector.

Food quality has become more and more important for today’s consumers, who are particularly concerned about the origins of animal derived ingredients in their plates. At the same time, farmers need to maximise their production. Scientific sources and the direct experience of passionate farmers tell us that no food additives, hormones or drugs can keep farm animals as healthy as an optimal living environment can. And healthy animals imply productive farms and higher quality food.

To assist farmers in grabbing the opportunity offered by today’s changing global market and thus shift towards less impactful methods of production, we developed Plinio - The Stable Kit.

Plinio is a cutting-edge, flexible and easy-to-use tool, based on IoT and AI technology and on cloud data analysis for the continuous monitoring of environmental parameters inside stables or livestock housings. Effective control of these parameters fosters animals’ optimal growth, limits the emissions of harmful gases to the atmosphere and guarantees a healthy workplace to farm staff. Doing all this, Plinio helps to boost the overall productivity of the farm and improves food safety and quality standards.

 

"We want to change the paradigm of livestock farming: we want to help reduce its impact on the environment, while delivering higher quality products."

 

We believe animal farming can be a sustainable and conscious practice if farmers shift towards new processes with the help of technology and focus on improving profits by boosting animal welfare rather than by increasing the numbers of animals they breed.

The livestock sector accounts for about 14% of the total GHG emissions to the atmosphere today. This pretty much equals to the emissions from the transportation sector. Moving forward in a business as usual scenario, or, more realistically, taking into account the increase in demographics which is expected in the next decades (we will soon be 9billion people on the Planet), animal farming will need to adapt and change fast if it wants to survive as a protein provider to the world.

With our service not only we provide animal farmers with an innovative tool to produce more while emitting less harmful gases to the atmosphere. We also provide consumers with a higher level of safety and transparency with regards to food, namely to animal derived products. With our product in action, one will be able to trace back the conditions an animal has spent its life in, hence going back to the very basis of the supply chain. Also, with our service animal welfare standards are much easier to respect for the farmers and compliance can be checked by certification bodies quickly and effectively.

 

Plinio – The Stable Kit

We have a fully functioning product, Plinio – The Stable Kit, that has been on the market since January 2018. Plinio - The Stable Kit was conceived to increase the quality of animal-derived products (e.g. milk, meat, eggs) through the improvement of animal welfare in the stable. More precisely, by monitoring the quality of the air the animals breathe, it is possible to control the overall health of the farm, and it becomes easy to distinguish safe from unsafe practices in animal farms.

We monitor gases dangerous for both animal health and human safety (i.e. NH3, H2S, CO2, CH4), and we complete our measurements with temperature, humidity, noise, dusts and light to ensure a safe and healthy environment is guaranteed. Our Kits are pre-configured, easy to install and can be used in any livestock farms (e.g. bovines, sheep, goats, poultry, pigs) with no difference.

Plinio is based on IoT and AI technology. Each of our devices collects data from the field, sends it to a cloud platform where they are shown in real time and are analysed through machine learning algorithms. This ensures a double service to our customers: our Kits send out alerts in real time if the environmental parameters in the stable are dangerous to the animals or the staff, and in the meantime they learn from the farm’s current behaviour to later provide the farmer with predictive-maintenance tools to improve the efficiency of their work.

Our Kits work 24/7 and completely remove the need for a test-day. For control institutes and research bodies this means that no in-person visit is needed to check the farms compliance with governmental regulations and standards or to record data series over long periods of time. Plinio has been developed to be tamper-resistant and cannot be accessed by the end user. All the deployed Kits are remotely controlled through a central platform with a user-friendly dashboard that can be accessed only with private credentials. A single dashboard can control any number of devices, grouped based on any criteria needed (e.g. geographical location, farm owner, animals breed, building). Plinio is completely customisable according to the requests of our customers in terms of sensors chosen and data recording frequency.

The number of Kits needed varies with the size of the farm: more extended farms or farms with several premises to be monitored will need more Kits. One single Plinio guarantees accurate data over 750m2 of free space (walls-free area). 

 

Why we are different

On the livestock market, there are manual sensors or ceiling probes for gas measurement, but they detect individual parameters, are expensive, mainly perform spot measurements and do not use IOT (Internet of Things) or AI (Artificial Intelligence) technology. Our product is cheaper and more complete than any monitoring device used today in the livestock sector. With a single stand-alone device, all the most important parameters defined in the European animal welfare standards regulation are measured and the overall health of the stable is in the user's hand at all times. In addition, it is fully customisable according to the user's needs. We provide complete hardware and software maintenance and update as part of our basic service.