Tractors that drive themselves. Satellite geomapping of fields. Technology that detects the nutritional parameters of harvest crops in real time. Innovation according to New Holland Agriculture, a CNH Industrial brand, at the National Innovation Awards in Modena, Italy.

London, December 1, 2016

Today marked the opening of the 2016 National Innovation Awards in Modena, Italy a three-day event comprising a conference, prize-giving ceremony and workshops with the ambitious goal of “shaping the future”. CNH Industrial (NYSE: CNHI / MI: CNHI) and its agricultural machinery brand New Holland Agriculture are among the event’s sponsors. The firm’s support is backed up by innovative pedigree in numerous sectors, beginning with agriculture.

Carlo Lambro, a member of the company’s Group Executive Council and Brand President of New Holland Agriculture took part in the event as well as and Gennaro Monacelli, Head of Design Analysis & Simulation at CNH Industrial, who has been named to the jury panel that will award the most innovative start-ups. In his address during the opening of the conference, which centered on the theme of "Shaping the future, visions of the future”, Carlo Lambro explained how and why innovation is making great advances in the agricultural sector.

The reason for this is simple: the challenges of modern farming are pressing and crucial for the future of us all. According to the World Bank, by 2050 we will need to produce 50% more food to feed the planet’s population. The Italian government intends to address this future scenario by focusing on innovation with its own “Industry 4.0” plan, one of the aims of which is to accelerate the technological and digital upgrading of agro-mechanical businesses. The programme could pave the way for the development of Farming 4.0, a topic currently on the agendas of European institutions and industry associations.

But what exactly is Farming 4.0? In the words of Carlo Lambro during the conference: "It is the natural continuation of the process that began in the late 1990s with precision agriculture, which uses automatic satellite-based guidance systems with the aim of producing more with less, that is to say, with fewer resources, no waste and in an environmentally friendly way.” Mr Lambro added that the Italian Ministry of Agricultural Policies has adopted “guidelines for the development of precision agriculture” to increase the agricultural area cultivated using these systems from the current 1% of the total cultivated area to 10% by 2021.

Already today, New Holland provides farmers with satellite guidance systems capable of reading the map of a field so that they can work, sow and treat parts of the field in different ways with an accuracy of just a few centimeters. The brand’s solutions include grape harvesters capable of sorting grapes of differing qualities and selecting the best clusters, as well as combine harvesters that measure the humidity of a crop in real time.

“But we are not stopping there,” continued Mr Lambro, “Farming 4.0 considers the farm in its entirety, connecting machines in the field to a single network with two-way information flows between the farmer and others involved in the production process. For example, the tractors can independently connect to sources of information on produce prices, so as to identify the most advantageous days for harvesting.”

CNH Industrial and its agricultural business are firmly at the global forefront of future autonomous farming. In August, New Holland Agriculture introduced the world’s first self-driving concept tractor. Able to work autonomously without a driver 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, it can be controlled and programmed from the farmer’s computer and even from mobile devices. New Holland’s NHDrive version is also equipped with a cab, to enable working either independently or with a driver when needed, thereby ensuring maximum flexibility. This extraordinary concept machine is the perfect flagship for Farming 4.0 in Italy and around the world