The world’s largest retailer Walmart has made wave to enter the precision agriculture market by lodging applications for six patents, it has emerged.
According to Reuters, the American company applied for a collection of patents last year that are designed to prevent damage to crops, control pest attacks on farms and cross-pollinate plants.
It has been reported that the patents form part of Walmart’s sustainability push. The company has worked with a selection of suppliers to reduce the amount of fertiliser used to grow crops in a bid to reduce the pollution and negative impacts on the environment.
To date, the company has applied for a total of for 46 patents for using drone technology, mostly to facilitate its delivery and logistics operations.
According to the publication, Jayson Lusk, head of agricultural economics at Purdue University, said: “Companies like Walmart for a long time have created sustainability initiatives and this is really where the rubber is meeting the road.”
“A way how this might come down is the imposition of standards on their suppliers,” Lusk said.