Saturday, July 13, 2024

Sama Leverages Worldwide AgTech AI Expertise to Boost Farming Productivity in Africa

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NAIROBI, Kenya, June 13, 2024 – For agriculture in East Africa to sustainably feed a growing
population, farmers must adopt AI tools to enhance productivity, increase yields, protect
environments and reduce costs. Sama, a leading provider of data annotation solutions that power the
artificial intelligence (AI) models of the future, has seen the potential improvements firsthand with
deployments for customers in Europe, North America and the Middle East. Drawing on that
experience, Sama will continue partnering with companies to support initiatives to revolutionize
agricultural sustainability in Africa, such as the East African Community’s Vision 2050 plan.
Speaking during the launch of a report on precision agriculture and the challenges AgTech models
face, Annepeace Alwala, Sama Vice President, Global Service Delivery, said there is both a
tremendous opportunity and a pressing need for AI to better serve farmers and help farming
businesses move forward while simultaneously addressing global challenges to reduce emissions and
sustainably feed a growing world population.
“Agriculture is facing a number of challenges—an increase in the demand for food and food safety,
decreasing agricultural land and labor shortages among them. Our experience with clients in other
parts of the world shows that computer vision applications working with Sama-quality data are
helping to address many of these challenges by automating tasks—from crop monitoring and weed
control to livestock health and pesticide use,” Alwala said.
Weeds, pests, and diseases are major obstacles to achieving the productivity needed to meet the
growing food demand around the world. Globally, up to 40% of crop production is lost to pests
annually, and over $220 billion is spent on related plant diseases. AI models like those evaluated by
Sama, identify pests, diseases and weeds, leading to better crop management, reduced pesticide usage
and increased productivity. For example, one autonomous machine developed by Carbon Robotics
can reportedly cover 15 to 20 acres a day and remove more than 100,000 weeds an hour, using
carbon dioxide lasers to kill the intruders.
Drone technology is increasingly being used to monitor crops and spray pesticides, made possible by
advancements in sensors for data collection, the accuracy of computer vision models and
innovations in pesticide spraying equipment. This information helps farmers make better decisions
about crop rotation, irrigation and pesticide use. Early detection allows farmers to take action
quickly and prevent widespread damage. In collaboration with Precision AI, Sama has helped
develop a computer vision model for a drone that can identify images at 0.55mm resolution while
flying at 50mph.
“With the increasing challenges faced by the agricultural sector in East Africa, our partnership with
Precision AI demonstrates the transformative power of AI in farming. We plan to deploy these
solutions to enhance crop monitoring and optimize resource distribution. Our goal is to inspire
similar advancements within the region,” Ms Alwala added.
ENDSAbout Sama
Sama is a global leader in data annotation solutions for computer vision that power AI and machine learning
models. Our solutions minimize the risk of model failure and lower the total cost of ownership through an
enterprise-ready ML-powered platform and SamaIQ™, actionable data insights uncovered by proprietary
algorithms and a highly skilled on-staff team of over 5,000 data experts. 25% of Fortune 50 companies,
including GM, Ford, Microsoft, and Google, trust Sama to help deliver industry-leading ML models.
Driven by a mission to expand opportunities for underserved individuals through the digital economy, Sama
is a certified B-Corp and has helped more than 65,000 people lift themselves out of poverty. An MIT-led
Randomized Controlled Trial has validated its training and employment program. For more information, vis

Samuel Musila
Samuel Musila
Passionate Software Developer and Tech content creator From Nairobi, Kenya

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