'FungiAlert' is an early-warning system that lets farmers know if a fungal outbreak threatens to ruin their crops. While many farmers use fungicide to protect their crops, these sprays can be toxic and overuse can lead to resistance. This clever alert system helps farmers protect their crops without the need to use harmful chemicals.
FungiAlert was developed by two PhD students at Imperial College London. The system is an in-field device that can be planted directly into the soil. The device contains specific chemicals that attract spores from the soil. If the presence of fungi is detected, the device will immediately change color and send out an alert to the farmer's smartphone. FungiAlert makes it easier for framers to know if their crops are threatened by a fungal outbreak so that they can take immediate action.
While the product is not on the market yet, the students aim to begin manufacturing the early-warning system in the near future.