Blog Horticulture News article

Getting into the cloud is easy for growers

News
Horticulture
21 September 2022
Operator On Smartphone Vanderlinden
Every day, more and more growers are working in the cloud. This comes as no surprise, because it is ultra-convenient and offers plenty of opportunities to optimize the crop. The cloud offers a variety of solutions to fit the needs of almost every organization. It provides a secure environment which enables growers to monitor and adjust conditions for their crop, wherever they are in the world. For Priva users, the first step is simple: a Priva Connected package that provides access to the Priva cloud and new services.

“Working in the cloud is similar to when the Internet first started,” says Patrick Dankers, Portfolio Manager Horticulture at Priva. “At the end of last century it was unusual to have Internet, but just a few years later it was unusual to not have it. That is how quickly things can change”. According to Patrick, the same thing will happen with working in the cloud.

Patrick sees many growers looking into working in the cloud. “Now would be a great time to start”, he says. “The cloud offers benefits straight away and brings you many additional opportunities. This makes it easier to develop and grow your company.” The only initial investment you need is a Priva Gateway that connects the Priva climate computer to the cloud. This way you will be able to achieve greenhouse automation in a blink of an eye.

The cloud offers opportunities for all growers and it’s easy to get started
Patrick Dankers

Portfolio manager

Patrick Dankers

How do you start?

Priva Connected is the first step to our online applications and services. It opens up the opportunity to see and control the climate data in the greenhouse in a super easy way, Patrick explains – wherever you are, whether you’re close by or far away. “Let us say you’re walking down the central path of your greenhouse and you want to know whether a compartment you can see has been irrigated. You can check whatever you need, right there and then on your smartphone and adjust if necessary with Priva Operator.”

Sensor in greenhouse

Wireless sensors

“A whole world of opportunities” opens up with this first step, Patrick reveals. One of these opportunities comes in the form of Priva Aranet wireless sensors. These sensors display highly accurate climate data per compartment or another unit of surface area. “Because wireless sensors are so versatile in terms of options and installation, they offer much more data and therefore a clearer picture of the climate data in the greenhouse,” Patrick explains.

Not only do the sensors supply more data, but in Priva Connected this data is immediately integrated with the data from the climate computer. Patrick: “Without this integration you will spend more time organizing the information than analyzing it. Because it is integrated, you can use the data efficiently straight away. It was technically very difficult to integrate this kind of data before.”

Dashboard with data

With the wide range of Priva Aranet wireless sensors, you can also measure new climate variables such as light (PAR) and soil moisture. “That’s much easier to do than with wired sensors,” Patrick says.

Instant overview of the alarms in your Priva systems

Priva Connected also gives you access to Priva Notification Center. It provides you with an overview of all alarms linked to the Priva systems at your horticultural business. It alerts you when an alarm is activated and gives you detailed information while you are on the go. In addition, you can switch directly to Priva Operator and change settings to solve the issue.

Adjusting on the dashboard

The Grower Intelligence Dashboard opens up another set of possibilities. Growers can register their cultivation goals based on crop-specific indicators and gear their climate and irrigation strategy towards them. They can check at any time whether the crop is developing in line with those goals. “At the moment, cultivation goals are often tucked away in an Excel spreadsheet or may even be in the grower’s head,” Patrick says. “With the Grower Intelligence Dashboard every grower can register those goals for each crop and work with them in a structured way.”

Dashboard with data

Every grower knows what they want to achieve with their crop, he says, but if their goals are not registered properly and checked regularly, that process is vulnerable and subjective. “That’s why it is good to register those goals in a digital system, keep an eye on them and adjust if necessary. In other words: plan-do-check-act. This helps growers maintain an overview of the cultivation process and easily adjust.”


When growers enter their cultivation goals, they can also enter the plant parameters and the crop results associated with those goals, such as height, truss formation and production, in the same Grower Intelligence Dashboard. Patrick: “For instance, if a grower is planning to produce early, they can enter the plant parameters and compare them with previous cultivation goals registered in the plan. This makes it easy to track whether the crop is progressing to plan, and the system will send a notification if there are deviations.


Growers can easily give their crop advisors access to the Grower Intelligence Dashboard to have crop data at their fingertips. Each advisor can be given read or write access for each service.

Plantonomy

Growers can go one step further and control the entire crop with Plantonomy. This technology automatically adjusts the settings to ensure the goals are achieved. “We realize that this is something of a pipe dream for many growers,” Patrick says. “A number of greenhouses are working with Plantonomy worldwide. We see it as a logical next step towards data-driven, systematic cultivation and development.”

Patrick emphasizes that the grower is always in control. “You can only grow automatically if you know what your cultivation goals are. I compare it with a self-driving car. It will only go to the destination you enter yourself.”

In addition, growers don’t need to worry about attackers such as hackers being able to influence the crop. “The Priva cloud is extremely secure,” Patrick emphasizes. “We regularly ask external parties and hackers to test our system.”

Take the first step now

More about Priva Connected

Would you like more information? We are happy to help you!

Tom Koot

Manager Sales Horticulture Europe

Tom Koot