Robots pose threat to seed and chemical companies

The $100 billion pesticides and seeds industry faces a new threat starting to pop up in a handful of fields: weed-killing robots.

Autonomous vehicles designed to kill weeds could eliminate the need for universal herbicides and genetically modified crops that tolerate them.

The seed industry, dominated by a handful of companies like Creve Coeur-based Monsanto, is bracing for that possibility, and some companies are changing their business models in response.

Bayer, which has agreed to acquire Monsanto, partnered with Bosch last year on a “smart spraying” research project. The project seeks to implement new technology without cannibalizing Bayer’s old chemicals business.

Read more: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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