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Lorenzo Conti (Crover)

Lorenzo Conti won a Shell LiveWIRE Smarter Future Award in October 2018 for his business, Crover.

Business Description

Based on data from FAO, the carbon footprint from cereal grains storage losses amounts to 215 million tonnes CO2-equivalent/year, which is about 6% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from food waste1. Long-term storage is the single post-harvest phase with the highest losses.
Crover, a start-up from Edinburgh, is developing the first robotic device which is able to move within piles of stored grains (e.g. in sheds or silos) and test the condition of the grains through fitted sensors. Unlike current grain monitoring technologies that measure only one variable and have limited reach, Crover provides a range of measurements, making early detection of potential grain spoilage much easier and quicker.
Crover’s robotic device is able to move freely through bulk solids (e.g. sand, grains, powders) at fully buried depths. Comparable to a plane or drone wings in air, or a boat’s rotor in water, it allows an object to move through solid grains.
Proactive management of grain observation like this can reduce losses and save significant money. By reducing these losses, and by using the data to make energy consumption for cooling and aeration of grain stores more efficient, the product aims to have a positive impact on the environment and to help the UK government reach its legally-binding target of reducing CO2-equivalent emissions from agriculture by 57% from 1990 levels by 2030, and by 80% by 20502,3.
So far Crover has received funding from LAUNCH.ed and The University of Edinburgh, and the other organisations in the Scottish entrepreneurial ecosystem: The Scottish Institute for Enterprise, Converge Challenge, The Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation, etc. Crover is planning to use the LiveWIRE funding to match fund a government grant, effectively tripling the award’s sum, allowing it to hire its first full-time employee and get an MVP ready for the market.
Lorenzo Conti – founder of Crover – said: “I believe the distinction between the terms low-carbon entrepreneurs and classic entrepreneurs is disappearing: environmental impact is more and more a key aspect of any business. If you have a solution to a big environmental problem which isn’t out there yet, it is quite likely you have a strong business proposition.”
You can follow Crover on Twitter and Facebook.

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