Scholar Profile - 2022 Winner

Elder Bruno - Brazil

Study: How digital transformation can be applied to farmers and how digital tools can be helpful for managing ESG

Elder Bruno, an agronomist from the state of Gois in Brazil, receives a 2022 Nuffield Brazil Scholarship supported by Grupo Sinagro.

Elder supports farmers to achieve better results through the introduction of innovative technologies for the production system and digital tools to support farm management decisions. Currently, he leads the New Business Department of Grupo Sinagro, one of the largest agricultural and cattle input distributors in the Cerrado region of Brazil. His role is to run strategies related to digital technologies and services, where he develops and rolls-out tools to be used by consultants, sales staff and customers to facilitate expansion of the company's client base across Brazil.

Elder is passionate about using digital technology to improve management and profitability on-farm and across the supply chain. He applied for a Nuffield Scholarship to understand how digital transformation can genuinely be applied to the farmers world while benefiting the sector, as well as getting a better understanding of how digital tools can be helpful for managing ESG.

"My research focuses on how digital transformation can impact large input production and distribution companies, and the real estate sector, and the consequences for their operational structures, financial positions, profitability and ESG management. I will then explore aspects such as how farmers buy or sell their products and how operational decisions about machinery are made. Ultimately, I'd like to understand models that offer farmers a higher chance for logistical, fiscal or even financial gain."

"The digital transformation of agricultural businesses and consequent reduced transaction costs is something that is much talked about, but farmers, be it grains, beef cattle or milk, still lack real clarity of the benefits that various digital solutions can bring. Considering that several large companies are entering this space, the overall picture is becoming even more complex."

"After Covid-19, Brazilian farmers will increasingly want better quality of service and speed. The digital training environment can help to improve the workforce, and online or online/offline transactions can increase accessibility, uptake and evolution of what farmers use and how they do business. Increased accessibility also means start-ups can connect more with the farmers problem and not with their products."

Elder plans to visit key distributors in the USA, Canada and Europe, as well as countries like Israel to understand the latest developments in new technologies. He aims to share his research outcomes through the Sinagro client platform, as well as through associations, group of farmers and other complementary companies, bringing practical tools to farmers and new ideas of business models to increase adoption.

Elder has a degree in Agronomy with a specialty in animal production and a MBA in strategic management. He is also a senior advisor and partner for different start-ups, projects and agribusiness companies and farms, supporting innovative hubs in Brazil to develop their business and connect with farmers needs. Elder also has consultancy experience, as an advisor, farm manager and implementation of integrated crop-cattle systems and new business developments in Brazil and other countries.

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