"Data is valuable, but data in the hands of the right people with the right context is really, really valuable." - T.J. Masker
"Growers tell me they are frustrated with precision ag, they've invested in the technology. I tell them, 'You just want to put the pieces of the puzzle together to see exactly what the picture is.’ And they are relieved when Premier Crop can help."
- Katie McWhirter, Director of Training and Development
Big data is a phrase that has integrated this world of technology across industries. It's about capturing relevant data from a huge number of sources, and translating it into something that people can use. Big data provides actionable insights to solve problems at scale and at speed. In this world of ag, we have billions of dollars of venture capital funding pouring into agriculture through technology builds. Big data has been at the center of that.
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.
"We know there are dollars left on the table on every acre, it's just a matter of finding it with your farm data." - Lance Meyer, Kansas
LANCE MEYER: Hi, guys. My name is Lance Meyer. I'm an advisor here in eastern Kansas, actually located in the little town of Wellsville, just southwest of Kansas City. I've been with Premier Crop for about a year and a half now, and I work with growers kind of all over Kansas. I’m mainly focused here in east-central Kansas, but I get out west and up north a little bit, so kind of all over.
"We use SciMax Solutions, a Premier Crop partner,
to push everything we can
in order to get the best ROI
and try to do the best job that we can."
- Mike Myers, Waukee, IA
"Part of the value of what they get in the Premier Crop program is being able to see beyond their own operations. A lot of times, hybrid and variety is the very first thing they look for."
"You're capable of using your yield monitor to measure,
do trials and check if your plan actually worked.
It's so much easier than it used to be." - Dan Frieberg
"We have growers who tell us that we're helping them with their economics, which helps convince their lender to give them the full operating line."
"The idea is to create a farm plan so the plant never has a bad day.
From start to finish, execute a farm plan,
and you will maximize yield and yield efficiency."
DARREN FEHR: The point is, to be responsible and to plan appropriately, it takes a lot of effort. And I think that's the theme for this podcast: it isn't easy to plan ahead for some of these things. For you to be successful, it isn't easy, and it takes some time. With all that being said, Dan, what are some of the key principles here to plan effectively, prior to purchasing products and prior to getting into the production cycle?
Topics: farm analytics