Precision Ag as a Service - Should it be a Service on Your Farm?

Posted by Kevin Kruize on 6/18/20 10:15 AM
Kevin Kruize

As a farmer you are tasked with making over 40 important business decisions each year, which is no small task.  These decisions can relate to anything from finance, product knowledge, agronomic knowledge, marketing, machinery repair/service, buying and negotiating skills, and computer skills. It's no wonder that as a farmer you have been known for being the “Jack of all trades,” however, how big of risk can you afford to take when it relates to making all of these decisions confidently?

When you look at other successful businesses, they make important decisions by utilizing a team of experts to research the problem and analyze each outcome. While the manager may make the final decision, it was done by relying on input, data and research from others. I've witnessed over the last 15 years working with growers that grower who use precision ag and data have outpaced their neighbors. Their data impacts and influences many important decisions they make to help them continuously learn from their fields.

When growers work with an educated agronomic advisor partnered with a precision ag system they see data the helps them drive decisions. But the communication with a person is a huge value, beyond the data.

precision ag as a service using an advisor

Product and Agronomic Knowledge

There are many great resources available to find general information, but using data created on your own farm is far more valuable than general information. The growers I work with focus on in-field interactions on their farm first and then compare other sources that may be relevant. Having all of their data organized in a single precision ag platform makes this very easy and allows them to have confidence in purchasing the right product for every acre. Take a look at the image I pulled from a Field Top Ten Report. 

premier crop soil test by yield range

This field indicates that higher potassium soil tests (Ave K) had higher yields. There are many other attributes that need to be considered, but as you see consistent trends, you will identify better management of crop inputs in each field and even within each acre.   

Equipment Purchasing

Upgrading or adding a new piece of equipment to the operation can be very exciting. However, most equipment produced in the last 15 years has built-in Precision Ag hardware. Be sure you know what you are buying so you can get the appropriate training, software needed to read the data, as well as being compatible with other equipment on your farm. Premier Crop Systems has the ability to use data from any piece of equipment, but if you had specific software you used on the farm it could be a challenge reading the data as well. 

Farm Finances

Knowing what product and rates to apply can have a significant impact on the bottom line. Premier Crop works very hard to PROVE everything is working on your farm. We always place Learning Blocks or Enhanced Learning Blocks in your field to prove the right products and rates. The most important piece is when we compare it to your financial impact. We have made it very easy to help you understand where you are making money or losing money in your fields. We help organize all of your costs and then tie it back to all of the data you have on each acre and provide breakeven cost/bu maps.    

cost per bushel map
Breakeven cost/bu shows exactly the areas where you are making money and losing money. This includes the variable cost from inputs such as variable rate Lime, N, P, K, and seed.  

Average production costs per acre or per bushel

Using a precision ag service on your farm will reduce your risk and give you the confidence in the decisions you make. Get a team of experts that can help you make important data-driven decisions so you can focus on what is most important to you! Please let us know how we can help!

 

Topics: Precision ag

About

Premier Crop Systems, based out of Des Moines, IA, started in 1999 to deliver better agronomic decisions through data analysis that lead to higher yields, increased profits and more sustainable practices for customers. 

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