The global livestock health management business developed an innovative livestock monitoring solution to help producers improve the way they check on the welfare of their livestock, thereby solving severe human labor shortages on farms
Serket is a start-up with a focus on implementing Artificial Intelligence solutions within the agricultural work-frame. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is becoming an essential component in modern business across diverse industries. It offers opportunities to stay competitive, cut costs and maximize processing times concerning a wide range of tasks - from sales to logistics, inventory, and more. The agricultural industry has often been cautious in adopting AI implementations, but Serket has a vision to help their clients improve their livestock management routines. The start-up’s technology can help pig farmers reduce daily operational costs, as well as minimizing labor challenges, and even decrease the global usage of antibiotics in their production.
“24/7 , Our solution is able We are able to detect the individual animal and monitor their activities, like drinking, eating, and behaviors like aggressiveness and playfulness drinking, eating comparable to the almost on human eye,”
says Kristof Nagy, Serket’s Founder and CEO.
Serket’s groundbreaking innovation allows their software to be integrated into existing surveillance camera networks eliminating the need for investments into upgraded surveillance and tagging systems. This makes the upgrade possible and scalable for farmers of all sizes - from smaller local producers up to large-scale operations with a hefty livestock inventory to manage and track.
One of the biggest advantages for pig farmers is the fact that Serket does not require expensive set-up investments, the system will seamlessly integrate with any pre-existing surveillance camera set-up already in the pig pen. Serket will work without the need for any additional hardware, no need for ear tags and sensors, which leads to a flexible solution that can be without new cameras or any other specialized piece of equipment. This cost efficiency sets Serket apart from other service providers in the category.
“Real-time animal monitoring and behavioral analysis make Serket unique in the livestock industry. Artificial intelligence for behavioral pattern recognition is one of the most innovative methods in the world, noted Laszlo Holbok Swine specialist, Vitafort Zrt. “Therefore, we truly support Serket to achieve their goals such as reducing mortality and antibiotic usage and optimizing feeding and farm management. By their developments in the industry livestock production can be safer and sustainable, so we are pleasured to work with Serket and support their development processes.”
Serket’s vision is to help customers streamline their workflow, modernize their infrastructure, and become driving force in the innovation of the industry as a whole. Based out of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, Serket developed a simple philosophy with their product: letting the cameras do the work and using the benefits of Camera Vision and AI solutions in order to increase the efficiency of the farm. Some local pig farmers, as well as pig producers elsewhere around the world, have already been able to have a first-hand experience of Serket’s solutions and are tracking progress related to antibiotic reduction. This is particularly important, especially since AMR (antimicrobial resistance) is currently considered one of the most pressing issues when it comes to food-related illnesses and human welfare in relation to food products.
Serket’s surveillance software can track the behavior of the pigs and use AI to assess their wellness and safety standards. The company’s system can seamlessly identify pigs from piglets, as well as analyzing and detecting various behavioral patterns. The software works by processing video footage from the camera feed on a 24/7 basis. The data can be analyzed in various ways, providing a huge array of insightful information. Serket can detect behavioral signals from single animals, including analyzing eating, drinking, and walking, among other things. In addition to that, the AI can also examine social behavior as well, recognizing isolation, as well as playfulness, aggression, agitation, stress, and other patterns that might be telling signs of issues or lack of wellness in pigs. The system can also help producers identify single animals who might be behaving erratically and oddly compared to the norm, including pigs who are overly active or sluggish. As Eniko Santa, Serket’s Animal Scientist, states “The master’s eye makes the animals fat - as the saying goes. Although some decades ago farmers spent most of their time among the animals, they knew them individually and fulfilled the animals’ individual needs. But today they neither have the time nor the energy to get to know thousands of animals individually. Furthermore, most of the problems happen when humans are not present. Thus, Serket’s position is unique, offering livestock observation 24/7. With our solution the farmer can always keep an eye on the herd and solve the problems efficiently at an early stage.”
Serket can also provide other important analytics, including providing accurate estimations of a single animal’s weight. Serket takes advantage of a series of deep learning networks, constituting the “brain” of the AI, based on millions of coefficients and parameters aiming to consistently refine analytics and processing tasks. Camera vision and ML technology are at the core of Serket’s system, which conducts multi-tracking and segmentation, as well as action detection, rather than using traditional livestock ear tags or individual sensors to track each pig in the pen.
While Serket is specifically focusing on pig farmers now, the possibilities are truly endless. The company’s Chief AI Officer, Rajat Thomas, explained that “the platform has a huge potential for scalability, and it can be implemented in other farming contexts requiring flexible and affordable livestock health management.” Moreover, Serket was recently accepted to the THRIVE Silicon Valley accelerator program, which is certainly going to help the start-up’s growth and success.
When asked about what lasting impression he hopes to leave with Serket, Nagy, stated that he has a vision that goes beyond mere profits. He envisions that the brand will
“systematically introduce the benefits of 21st century technology to agriculture, and equip humanity with the tools needed for sustainable farming, not only on earth, but also on other worlds, as mankind is progressively broadening its horizons and scale.”