Australian AI app puts Sri Lankan tuna under microscope
An Australian start-up has landed funding and a significant partner to test its AI assessment app on tuna for a Sri Lankan supermarket chain.
Created in South Australia, the GoMicro AI microscope has previously been used in a kit to diagnose leishmaniasis — a disease caused by sandflies — in war-torn nations, in schools as a teaching tool and on farms to identify pests.
It is now being tested to grade tuna for consumption in Sri Lanka.
By combining a mobile phone microscope attachment with an artificial intelligence suite, the technology can recognise patterns and objects with a fraction of the number of photos usually required.
GoMicro founder Sivam Krish said that their AI microscopy tool had impressed an investor in Sri Lanka because it could grade seafood, such as tuna, with a database of 100s of photos instead of tens of thousands.
“We now have an investment from a star investor, Jeevan Gnanam in Sri Lanka, so we formed a fully owned subsidiary there to do our software development,” Krish said.
Gnanam introduced GoMicro to John Keells Holdings, the largest conglomerate in Sri Lanka and the owner of supermarket chains.
“Their supermarket chain has an extraordinary commitment to deliver fresh food. They procure directly from farmers through five collection centres and put it in shops with 24 hours,” Krish said.
“We actually talked to them to help them assess vegetable quality, but tuna assessment was a bigger challenge. While it is easy to differentiate really good tuna from really bad tuna, it is difficult to differentiate good tuna from not too good tuna.
“It’s a 12-year apprenticeship to train a tuna expert, so this is a problem in the edge of human assessment.”
GoMicro solves this problem by allowing warehouse staff to use their phones to take a photo of the tuna and the AI-supported app then quickly determines a grade so they can label it and send it to the appropriate store.
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