Episode 9



Innovation Japan


There are various growing concerns over agricultural sustainability, including forecasted water shortages by 2030.  In order to address this issue, a digital farming technology has been developed in Japan. Experienced farmers are able to use water and fertilizers more efficiently, thanks to their extensive experiences, knowledge and know-how. By utilizing the IoT and AI to collect and analyze data from their farming practices and the surrounding environment, this technology enables even inexperienced growers to implement such intangible techniques. It can improve agricultural productivity even in areas with limited access to water. This technology is expected to bring a huge change to the future of sustainable agriculture.


Water, fertilizer, experience and knowledge are essential to agriculture.

But agriculture that relies on large amounts of water and fertilizer faces sustainability issues.


IoT and AI are coming into wider use in Japan as a way to spread sustainable farming.

Routrek Networks, Inc.
President & CEO
Shin'ichi Sasaki

Water shortages are the biggest problem for agriculture around the globe.

In 2030, water supplies are forecast to be 39% short of demand.

Inexperienced growers have a strong tendency to use more water and fertilizer, and they let more wasted fertilizer flow into groundwater.


That water is a health hazard.

Cultivators with superior knowledge and experience can judge the right amount of water and fertilizer to use.
Doing this lets them control yields and quality. That's where we focused.


We used IoT and AI to turn that knowhow into data so it could be used more widely.

This is digital farming.

It will take us from farming relying on experience and intuition, to sustainable farming optimized with data.


Meiji University Kurokawa Field Science Center
Kiyoshi Ozawa

“Fertigation” is an agricultural technique created in Israel, which has a severe water shortage.

Instead of spraying a large amount of water with sprinklers or the like, fertigation uses narrow pipes to place drops of water and fertilizer at the roots of the growing crops.

We used IoT and AI to make an advancement in fertigation.

We collect data from soil and light sensors.
AI analyzes the data with the accumulated knowhow of skilled cultivators to determine the right amount of water and fertilizer.

We can minimize the amount required to keep the soil in proper condition.


With our technology, agricultural productivity throughout the region will drastically improve.

Implementing this simple digital farming method was inexpensive and highly efficient.

Routrek Networks, Inc.
President & CEO
Shin'ichi Sasaki

Agriculture is changing in big ways thanks to IoT and AI. First, it will fix agriculture's water shortages.

It will also help raise the value of farming.

We are already starting to get results in Japan, and the technologies are beginning to spread to Vietnam, China and elsewhere in Asia.


We need to keep improving agriculture for the sake of our children’s future.

I believe our technologies will help make agriculture sustainable for the next generations.

This video was created in collaboration with Routrek Networks, Inc.