As with many industries, technology has advanced the farming industry considerably in the last two decades. The latest ag technology provides growers with the tools to improve efficiency and increase their yields. These advancements come from a variety of sources – machinery, mobile applications and business intelligence. By using these three irrigation management tools, growers will be poised to manage their farms focused on the future, while still having time to enjoy today.
1. Smart Machines
As technology continues to advance, more and more smart machines can be found on the farms worldwide, enhancing the grower experience, reducing inputs, and even performing operations autonomously. Farm machinery, from drones to harvesters to pivots, is becoming smarter with each growing season. The feature sets offered for farm machinery are becoming more advanced with integrated tools, and are even learning from the farmer’s operation – providing more data and options to growers than ever before. Irrigation management options like Valley® Variable Rate Irrigation (VRI) give growers site-specific irrigation for their fields. With a combination of hardware and software, VRI allows growers to give every field the exact amount of water it needs, when it needs it. This reduces guesswork and enables farmers to make smarter decisions and run their operation more efficiently.
2. Mobile Apps
Today, we can do almost anything from our smartphones or tablets, including remote management and control of our irrigation equipment. Mobile irrigation management applications, such as AgSense® and BaseStation3™, provide you with the ability to efficiently monitor your complete irrigation operation from anywhere, so you will be alerted immediately if and when a problem arises. Mobile apps for remote farm management are essential to keep everyone on the farm integrated and accessible at all times. They can even help provide peace of mind when you are away from the farm.
3. Business Intelligence
With more data being collected today than ever before, it’s sometimes hard to know what to do with the information your machinery and applications provide. It’s important to have a robust reporting solution that can integrate with your data sources and provide analytical details about the efficiency of your farming operation. Using these analytics can help to identify sources of input inefficiency, causes for loss in finished product, or how to operate leaner in a market that experiences constant changes in crop prices. As data collection and reporting continues to advance, it has started to become predictive and suggestive about operating actions, further assisting the farmer make more informed decisions.
Talk to other growers, talk to your agronomist, and talk to your local Valley dealer about how to integrate all of these tools into your farming operation.