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Smarter Farming: California’s Sun World Transforms Produce Business with IBM Analytics Technology

In a press release issued this morning (Smarter Farming: California's Sun World Transforms Produce Business with IBM Technology), IBM shared how Sun World LLC is using IBM Cognos TM1 BI and analytics technology from IBM Business Partner Applied Analytix to "improve crop yields, reduce waste and expand its customer base, while providing more cost effective and energy efficient harvesting practices."

Sun World's Director of Budgets and Reporting describes how the use of analytics has allowed them to shift from being forced to observe costing trends only after the fact to being able to make proactive decisions based on the direction they anticipate costs to go:

"We've aimed to transform the company culture from a farming business where you 'grow and hope for the best' to one that uses information analytics to provide an accurate measurement of the business," said Sun World's Director of Budgets & Reporting Steve Greenwood. "Before, we didn't know until 30 days after the month how our harvest costs were trending. By that time, it was too late to start financial planning because the crops had already been harvested. We've turned raw data into business insight, improved our order fill rates, and have gone from being a reactive company to a proactive company."

Other benefits from the application of analytics technology cited by the company include:
  • 8.5% reduction in water usage (especially important in California's climate)
  • 10-15% reduction in labor costs
  • 20% reduction in use of fuel
  • 8% increase in efficiency in farm labor
  • 20% increase in sales to key customer segments, generating $3M in new business

For further highlights, please see the full press release.

 Smarter Farming: California's Sun World Transforms Produce Business with IBM Technology