Aiming to enhance efficiency and reduce downtime in Saskatchewan’s farming industry, Parker Wells, CEO & Co-Founder of Barnstorm Agtech Inc., is leading the development of mid-sized, compact self-driving tractors (a.k.a. the Barnstormer) to assist in performing tasks like harrowing, land rolling, spreading, and others.
As Wells operates his own farm, he saw firsthand how his large, expensive farming equipment could easily hinder operations with issues like a flat tire or a broken hose. He realized that with the autonomous driving capabilities of the ‘Barnstormer’, they can lessen downtime risks inherent in larger equipment. “If one breaks down, the rest keeps working! Also, I believe that the future of farming will be on smaller, smarter, and less expensive machines. It’s swarm-farming,” Wells states.
In addition, Barnstorm Agtech Inc. will help farmers mitigate the rising cost of large farm equipment, especially smaller farms that cannot afford the newest, most efficient, and competitive technology. While the ‘Barnstormer’ will be a smaller machine, it also suggests that there will be less soil compaction and greater precision, which can translate to higher yields. “This means that farmers can grow more with the same land, while also reducing the industry’s environmental impact,” Wells adds.
The ‘Barnstormers’ are currently in the prototyping phase and are expected to move into the testing phase by Summer 2022, which will first be used on Wells’ farm. Wells hopes to see more units tested on the fields of other farms in Saskatchewan by 2023 and is looking for interested farmers to try it out!
Wells explains, “We believe that farmers shouldn’t feel pressured to buy risky experimental technology, so in the early years of commercial deployment, we’ll provide custom farming services. We’ll bring the machines right to your field to do the job on a per-acre basis.”
In 2021, Barnstorm received a total of over $1M in seed funding with $350K from Innovation Saskatchewan through the Agtech Growth Fund (AGF), and the rest from individual investors and angel syndicates. They also participated in Co.Labs Co.Launch in 2020. “With this funding, as well as the support of the #SKtech community, we expect to commercialize in the coming years. 2022 will focus on intensive field testing for our Barnstormer units to take us beyond the prototype to a full working swarm!”
Are you looking to scale your innovative agtech? The Agtech Growth Fund (AGF) is a research and development (R&D) funding program designed to accelerate the commercialization of game-changing technological innovations in the province’s agricultural sector.
Founder: Parker Wells, CEO & Co-Founder | Mitchell London, Co-Founder
Establishment Date: 2020
Social Media Channels:
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/barnstormingrobots/
- LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/barnstorm-agtech