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Improving grain harvests and care provisions

Nquiringminds, a leading Internet of Things (IOT) technology company based at Southampton Science Park, is leading projects at home and abroad to solve real societal problems.

In an Indo-UK humanitarian Newton Funded project, entitled GrainCare, the company is working to develop low cost humidity sensors and mobile apps for monitoring and preventing problems with grain storage across the Indian sub-continent. Through the project, Indian farmers will change their processes and management of grain and get mobile alerts regarding moisture or temperature rises during drying and storage. They will also be provided with solutions to the various problems detected to enable them to act immediately to prevent losses in both quality and quantity. The overall aim is to help Indian farmers cut down on post-harvest spoilage and maintain the quality of their stored and dried grains.

Meanwhile, back in Hampshire, the company is also involved in a collaborative venture with Southampton City Council and researchers at the University of Southampton to tackle inefficiencies in the crisis-stricken home care industry.

Research has shown that a combination of increasing demand, dwindling funding and staff retention issues is preventing the care industry from delivering an effective and profitable service, deterring many providers from offering their services more widely.

The CareShare project, funded by Innovate UK and led by NquiringMinds, aims to address these issues by integrating the unpaid sector with the professional sector, and using a dynamic ‘find-a-carer’ app and website to commission care in smaller units as opposed to long-term contracts. It will use a set of mobile apps to share data through cloud and web-based services and offer key features such as the ability to share basic notes between professional and unpaid carers; coordinating visits so that everyone does not turn up on the same day; and a rating system to help monitor care quality.

Nick Allott, CEO of NquiringMinds commented: “We believe that technology has a crucial role to play in delivering more efficient care services. Sharing data between citizens and organisations will be the key to fully engaging the community in this growing problem.”