In this episode we’re talking about Smart Farms and the role they’re playing in driving and de-risking agtech adoption.

We welcome back Food Agility CRC chief scientist Professor David Lamb who joins to discuss how artificial intelligence will be used to collate data and inform decision-making in the future.

We also hear from Ian Layden from the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries’ Gatton Smart Farm, which is based in the sub-tropical Lockyear Valley and focuses on agtech adoption within the horticulture industry.

And we’ll chat to Kalfresh CEO Richard Gorman. Kalfresh grows, processes and markets vegetables and has collaborated with Gatton Smart Farm to showcase in-field robotics to Australian growers.



Dave is a physicist and has worked in precision agriculture for more than 25 years. In this time, he has led more than 40 R&D projects and championed the concept of smart farming. He led the launch of Australia’s first SMART Farm at the University of New England and, more recently, the Global Digital Farm at Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga, NSW.
In addition to his role as Chief Scientist at Food Agility, David took on the additional role of Deputy CEO on 1 November 2023. He also holds adjunct and visiting Professor appointments at University of New England, Charles Sturt University and the University of Technology Sydney.


Ian is the Director of Vegetables, Systems and Supply Chains RD&E in the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF). From within Horticulture and Forestry Science he leads a group of about 50 staff working across horticulture systems and supply chains. In 2021, he successfully launched Queensland’s first ‘Smart Farm’ project in Gatton, this $14M partnership with Hort Innovation, is transforming DAFs Gatton Research Facility into a showcase AgTech facility to drive the adoption of automation, protected cropping and supply chain technologies across horticulture.


Richard Gorman heads up vertically-integrated Queensland vegetable farming company Kalfresh and has overseen its growth into a year-round grower, packer and marketer of fresh vegetables, conventional and Certified Organic, to domestic and export customers.

Kalfresh is a large supplier of carrots, green beans, sweet corn, onions and pumpkin and in 2015 diversified into the value-add space, producing ready-to-eat fresh vegetable products. Over the past five years Kalfresh has embarked on a program to introduce robotic technology to the farming and production systems.