From more involved crop science to precision ag technology, farming has progressed rapidly over the last half-century. The tools you use in your business are no longer limited to tractors and their many attachments or combines — technology is slowly, but effectively, carving out its place, and it’s getting to the point where there are some smart tools that you just have to have on your farm.
Here are five of them.
You’re on the GrainFox website, so it only makes sense that GrainFox appears first on our list.
As a comprehensive farm wealth toolkit, GrainFox helps you make informed sales decision through intuitive tools and features and expert market analysis, all backed by more than 20 years of historical and statistical data.
GrainFox helps you take control of the way you sell your grain, along with all the strategizing you do leading up to the sale, including:
- ROI calculation
- Inventory, delivery, and sales tracking
- Data gathering
- Price discovery
GrainFox’s main goal is to help you maximize your profits and fortify your long-term success through informed sales decisions.
UAVs or drones
Understanding the layout of your fields, how elevation may drainage patterns, and general crop inspection has never been easier, thanks to the bird’s eye view that unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) provide.
As one of the most versatile devices you can have on your farm, drone technology continues to improve, now offering plant and field health sensors, spray applications, security, and more. Along with onboard artificial intelligence (AI), it seems that nothing is off-limits, with current testing even including autonomous pollination.
While drones haven’t fully penetrated all levels of the ag industry, smaller and medium-size farmers are seeing great benefits to having these electronic eyes in the sky.
We may not be able to control the weather, but we can certainly mitigate how the elements affect crop conditions thanks to the advent of agriculture sensors.
Monitoring, measuring, ion detection, GPS — ag sensors take much of the guesswork out of maintaining your crops. Sensors can be used to measure soil moisture, pH, compaction, and physical properties, while other sensors can help measure air flow and aid in mapping out your fields.
The main purpose of these sensors is to help you maximize yield with minimal resources, which is why a sensor system can be so valuable to your operation. They can help lower your on-farm expenses and increase long-term ROI while helping to raise the quality of your crops.
The one drawback to these devices is that the majority of them require a consistent internet connection, which can be a bit dicey depending on your location.
Cereal Aphid Manager (app)
This pest management app was developed by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and is designed to help producers control the aphid populations in their cereal crops.
The app will ask you to walk a specific path through your fields, stopping at least five times to count aphids and beneficial insects, after which it will calculate total populations and provide a prediction for whether you should spray, hold off, or wait to sample again.
Cereal Aphid Manager then stores the data right on your smartphone or tablet so that you can track the growth and decline of aphid populations throughout the growing season.
Fieldmargin is primarily a mapping app that helps you get things done on your farm in an orderly and efficient fashion. While GrainFox helps you keep track of the information that helps you make winning sales decisions, Fieldmargin helps you keep track of the day-to-day tasks on your farm.
Fieldmargin helps you quickly map your farm, record observations, and share everything with your team. You can also plan and track work, track input use per field, record and compare yields, review field history, and scout issues across your operation.
You can even store and share photos in the app to share with your team for easy reporting.
The technological advantage
As technology improves, especially in the realm of AI, farming can only get more precise, which will ideally help to increase yield, boost yield quality, mitigate issues, and ultimately help you maximize your profits for the long term.
If GrainFox isn’t part of your toolkit yet, try it FREE for 3 months! Register now.