Published on Jan. 22, 2019
Artificial Intelligence is the Real Deal
If your genetics company isn’t out front when it comes to artificial intelligence, you’re liable to be left behind. That was the message in a recent talk at the world-renowned Banff Pork Seminar in Banff, Alberta, Canada. Fortunately for Hypor clients, the company is positioned on the cutting edge of this breakthrough technology.
“At Hendrix Genetics, we collect millions of data points per day on phenotypes, genotypes, ultrasound images, videos and sensor signals,” said Bram Visser, geneticist with Hendrix Genetics. “In doing so, we are always looking for new, innovative ways to use the data we gather in enhancing our breeding programs. We actively seek experts in other fields for partnership opportunities that will benefit our clients.”
A perfect example is the artificial intelligence (AI) project partnership between Hendrix Genetics and BrainCreators, a team of AI experts based in Amsterdam with decades of experience. The project is aimed at using AI to predict individual slaughterhouse traits for swine prior to processing. It would allow geneticists to link genes with traits of interest to industry such as toughness, intramuscular fat, net carcass weight and taste.
As Visser explained in his talk, genetics is a powerful tool, which is why Hendrix Genetics invests considerable time and money to make those key connections between genes and traits. By identifying which genes produce the desired results, scientists can guide breeding programs in the best way to achieve their goals. The challenge with swine is that it’s hard to track and study them throughout the value chain once they go to slaughter and are processed.
That challenge is what attracted the company to BrainCreators, and it explains the excitement around the partnership.
Hypor is proud to be one of the first teams within Hendrix Genetics to be involved with AI. With the application of this technology, we aim to increase the accuracy of selection for a number of traits that are hard to measure on the live animal. Our investment will create value throughout the chain from genetics right through to processing.
Going forward, the potential of AI to impact the swine industry is limitless: special glasses that cause certain pigs to light up who need attention; 3-D images for detecting the depth of animals and determining pig weights with greater accuracy; hi-tech cameras that extricate muscle scores. It’s a brave new world, and one that Hypor and Hendrix Genetics are embracing for the benefit of all customers.
“It is clear by now that AI is changing the world as we know it. Like Amazon, Google and Apple, Hendrix Genetics sees AI as a critical component of its future. Through partnerships like the one with BrainCreators, we are adding a new tool to our toolbox of technologies and bringing value to clients through innovation, collaboration and sustainability.”