Frequently Asked Questions
SmartBarley is not only a technology platform to engage with our growers, but also a reflection of AB InBev’s Dream through bringing growers together to create value for their farms and our supply chain, ensuring we can continue to procure high quality malt barley to produce the beers that our consumers love.
It starts with benchmarking. Growers participating in SmartBarley complete a review with our agronomist, capturing key barley production characteristics and practices for an individual field.
The information captured in the field review populates more than 40 production and environmental crop performance metrics, translating the grower’s field into an advanced metric dashboard. AB InBev agronomists use the dashboard to identify insights and opportunities for improvement at the regional and individual level.
Growers work with their AB InBev agronomist to identify and implement the best practices specific to their operations, facilitated through a portfolio of technology and management programs that close gaps and raise the benchmark further.
Any grower who contracted malt barley with AB InBev or a local affiliate within the current or previous season, and harvested the barley to specification, can participate.
The primary aim of SmartBarley is to provide a platform for exchanging malt barley best practices that help our growers improve their productivity, profitability and natural resource efficiency.
SmartBarley will also be used for the following:
- Through Bud Lab, an AB InBev research partnership with the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, USA, we are developing statistical models that correlate climate, soil, topography, quality and SmartBarley data, identifying the factors that drive malt barley productivity and quality. We will bring these insights back to our growers through the SmartBarley platform.
- We will leverage SmartBarley data to strengthen our global barley breeding activities, integrating insights from SmartBarley to help us deliver better performing varieties into the future.
- Providing improved knowledge on environmental and crop practice influences, SmartBarley will help us contract the right varieties in the right regions - enabling growers to maximize productivity and input use efficiency.
Malt barley growers in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Russia, South Africa,Tanzania, Uganda, the United States, Uruguay and South Africa are currently participating in SmartBarley.
We plan to make SmartBarley available soon to AB InBev agronomists and our extension partners in smallholder markets like Uganda and Tanzania.
In countries where we currently have SmartBarley, we are taking it to the next level by using the data to build sustainability metrics and create predictive analytics to help growers make decisions that will impact yield, quality and resource use. Working with research and ag-tech partners, we continue to explore further insights we can provide to growers by pairing the field-level data collected through SmartBarley with other data sources like historical weather and soil data and crop imagery.
If you are a malt barley grower that currently contracts with AB InBev or one of our affiliates, and are interested in participating in SmartBarley, please contact your local AB InBev agronomist.
We believe SmartBarley can deliver value across the farm production system. As such we will continue to explore and test innovations that strengthen SmartBarley’s value to our growers. If you have a product or service that supports this aim, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
AB InBev’s 2025 Smart Agriculture goal is to ensure that by 2025 100% of our direct farmers will be skilled, connected and financially empowered.
SmartBarley is playing an important role in helping us achieve this goal by identifying opportunities to improve productivity and environmental performance, driving the exchange of improved practices across growing regions and measuring the efficacy and impact of our initiatives.