Three Steps to Combine Farm Agronomics and Economics

Posted by Matt Bowers on 3/18/21 9:15 AM

We often use the phrase, “Everything agronomic is economic.” What does that really mean? 

First, let's first define agronomics and economics. What is agronomics? That's everything that we do in the field related to making good management decisions. It's deciding how much fertilizer to apply and where to put it, planting rates, crop protection, tillage systems and how to incorporate all of this into the farm. Those all go into how we grow our crop. On the economics side, we’re talking about all of the money involved in farming. Farming is a business, and just like any other business, you need to make sure you have cash flow so you have the opportunity to farm again next year, and the year after that. So, how do we focus on agronomics and economics? We do that by analyzing growers’ data. We use that knowledge to help them make decisions on their farm. 

Knowing what you’ve done on the farm in the last five, 10, or 20 years can provide valuable knowledge as you plan into the future. However, if you never take that data and don't use it to make decisions, it's not doing you any good. It's important to invest time into collecting your farm data. We work with growers to analyze their collected field data. We add costs to the layers of data including product cost, operations cost, management cost if they have any land-specific cost, and tie that to the yield file so we can see what is making agronomic and economic sense on the farm.

It's fairly easy to tell where there are higher yields, but it's a lot harder to know if that yield increase also caused an increase in the pocket book. Did the decision pay for itself? Did you produce enough bushels to offset the cost of production? Every pass across the field matters agronomically, but it also has a cost associated with it. We give you three steps to help combine your farm agronomics and economics below. 

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Topics: Enhanced learning blocks, data analytics, Precision ag, trials, learning blocks, hybrid selection, data driven decisions, farm analytics, Big Data, nutrient removals

Protecting crop profits with precision ag

Posted by Brenton Rossman on 5/28/20 8:15 AM

"In tough years, it's even more important to manage your inputs and to maximize profit. Way too often, I hear people want to maximize yield and, obviously, the more bushels you have, the more you have to sell. But if it costs you too much to raise, you might not have increased your profitability by increasing yield." – Eric Marchand, Britt, IA

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Topics: learning blocks

Does Variable Rate Anything Pay?

Posted by Dan Frieberg on 8/20/19 8:13 AM

Difficult economic times tend to bring out skepticism or at least a review of current practices. Recently I was asked “Do variable rate applications of any crop input really pay?” To some it might be surprising that 20 plus years after variable rate technology was first brought to the market, there are still so many that haven’t “bought in” to the concept.

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Topics: learning blocks, variable rate

Best Average Rate Costs Profits

Posted by Dan Frieberg on 7/16/19 8:16 AM

Long before GPS was part of our acronym vocabulary, my early agriculture career started in eastern Iowa and northern Illinois. On one of those scorching hot July days, as you were driving through the area, every so often the road would be higher than the fields and you could visually capture a birds-eye view of the fields below. You could see parts of the fields, where the corn was rolled up tight as the plants went in to "protection" mode – while other parts of the field look perfectly normal. Images like that help make me an advocate that managing parts of the fields differently would make agronomic and economic sense.

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Topics: Enhanced learning blocks, learning blocks, variable rate

Are you applying the right rates?

Posted by Sarah Windhorst on 4/9/19 3:55 PM

In 2005, Premier Crop trademarked a unique idea that has become a common practice with our customers. A trademark called Learning Blocks™. If you’ve conceded to the idea that your fields aren’t the same from fence line to fence line and you’re already managing your fields in zones, you’re ahead of the pack. But, are you checking your work? How do you confirm you are choosing the right rates for the zones in your variable rate planting or nutrient prescription?  Do you just trust that the prescription is right?

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Topics: Farm technology, Precision ag, management zones, trials, learning blocks

THREE Ways to Determine Field Profitability Using Your Technology {Pt. 3}

Posted by Molly Haub on 4/2/19 8:04 AM

This is a three part series focusing on ways to determine your field profitability using your technology. We will post the series over the course of two months. If you don't want to wait, you can get the full series here.

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Topics: Farm technology, data analytics, Precision ag, Ag technology, management zones, cost per bushel, learning blocks

THREE Ways to Determine Field Profitability Using Your Technology {Pt. 2}

Posted by Molly Haub on 3/19/19 8:07 AM

This is a three part series focusing on ways to determine your field profitability using your technology. We will post the series over the course of two months. If you don't want to wait, you can get the full series here.

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Topics: Farm technology, data analytics, Precision ag, Ag technology, management zones, cost per bushel, learning blocks

THREE Ways to Determine Field Profitability Using Your Technology {Pt. 1}

Posted by Molly Haub on 3/5/19 8:04 AM

This is a three part series focusing on ways to determine your field profitability using your technology. We will post the series over the course of two months. If you don't want to wait, you can get the full series here.

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Topics: Farm technology, data analytics, Precision ag, Ag technology, management zones, cost per bushel, learning blocks

Learning Blocks

Posted by Dan Frieberg on 11/26/18 4:22 PM

Some people remember phone numbers or slender dates; I remember farm fields. Before the 2005 crop year, the program leaders for Central Advantage from Central Valley Cooperative in southern Minnesota asked me to help generate variable-rate planting prescriptions. The primary question was “agronomically, what makes sense?”

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Topics: management zones, trials, learning blocks

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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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