In 2015 following a life of living and working on a farm, StrongBó founder Michael McInerney realised that it was necessary to try to allow farmers to have better control over their herds by providing up to date data on the performance of individual animals and to use that data to tailor how each animal is cared for and reared to optimise the farm output. This started initially with looking at just animal weight but expanded into a wider engineering solution with the potential to reshape the methods of beef production.
Engagement with CAPPA
The products developed by the company measure a number of significant parameters on individual animals in the herd. In order to fully maximise the potential of the product and the data generated, in-depth data analysis of the raw data was required to extract key figures and allow the herd owner to monitor the day-to-day progress of the animal and the herd as a whole. The developed algorithms needed to be compatible with existing software and hardware and allow the company to implement future revisions.
How CAPPA Delivered Solution for Industry
Through an interaction initially via the Rubicon Centre in Cork Institute of Technology, the company approached CAPPA to assist with the problem. A significant volume of data is generated by the automated weighing system. The animals’ weight is measured each time it attends a trough for water. The work undertaken included an automated data-cleaning algorithm. Tis was able to deal with scenarios such as where more than one animal was on the instrument generating values, which were too large, or where the animal only had three legs on the machine generating values, which were too low. In addition to this interpolation was applied to deal with missing data. All data went through a time series-smoothing model to evaluate the overall trend of each animal over time. This was then used to calculate the water consumed by each animal per day. predict the animals’ weight and to evaluate the growth rate of the animal at the resolution of a single day. The research carried out allowed StrongBó to manage a massive amount of data and keep our system live.