The new head of UF/IFAS shared that artificial intelligence in citrus is a priority in the fight against citrus greening.

University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences’ (UF/IFAS) new head, J. Scott Angle shared UF/IFAS’s increased focus on the use of artificial intelligence in citrus to combat citrus greening in a recent Citrus Industry article. Angle maintained that artificial intelligence, or AI, offers many benefits for citrus. See the details below.

Artificial Intelligence in Citrus

Angle first pointed to AI’s capabilities when it come to data. “We’re to the point now in science where there’s so much data that we’ve generated … that it becomes very difficult now to make sense of all this data that we’re collecting, and that really can only be done by artificial intelligence,” he said in the article. With data concerning nutrients, the weather, irrigation, soil, and the trees themselves, artificial intelligence in citrus means better interpretation of data much faster than any grower could do manually.

AI can also play a huge role in both detecting and combating pests and diseases like citrus greening. One smart phone app being developed would detect citrus greening way before any other current method could possibly do.

Angle pointed out that AI “not the solution (to HLB), but it’s one of the management tools which can be quite helpful,” he said in the article. As with other areas, AI offers a management tool in the fight against citrus greening and other diseases and pests.

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