Spirits were high for representatives from The Climate Corporation, a division of Monsanto, at this year’s Ag Media Summit following an exciting announcement earlier this year: Their digital agriculture platform has officially been used to map over 75 million acres of United States farmland.
“We’re seeing widespread adoption of these digital tools,” representative Chelsea Shepherd said during an interview at the 2015 Ag Media Summit, “Farmers are finding value in the digitization of the farm, and that’s where the industry is going.”
The Climate Corporation’s digital ag platform is composed of several options for producers to choose from: Climate Basic™ is a free online and mobile product that offers field level weather information and scouting functionality for farmers. It provides farmers a variety of precision services available directly on their tablet or computer, including daily precipitation reports and the ability to capture geo-located images for help identifying pests and diseases.
“They can go in, they can map their fields, they can determine which fields are workable on any given day based on the precipitation levels in that field,” says Shepherd.
Climate Pro™, the premium offering, also offers customizable nitrogen management opportunities for farmers, where they can individually and accurately analyze and manage how much nitrogen is needed on a field-by-field basis. The ability to offer such precise management of nitrogen fertilizer applications offers huge benefits to producers, from both economic and environmental standpoints. It has exploded in growth this year, and has increased its usage from the initial launch size of one million acres to five million acres of farmland. Climate Pro™ is available across the corn belt for a price of three dollars per acre.
The third product, FieldView®, provides field health imagery for farmers. It offers a more precise look into their fields, allowing producers to better focus their scouting efforts across their operation and helping farmers to maximize their returns.
The increased adoption of these digital tools only reinforces the positive impact that precision agriculture and technology have on the sustainability and efficiency of farming operations across the entire industry.
“It’s really about data management,” says Shepherd of the digital platform’s increased demand, “Historically farmers have had records and files stacked to the ceiling, they’ve kept the data about their operation in notebooks. We’re able to bring all of this data together, so they can have it all at once at their finger tips, and they can make better decisions on their farm.”
Listen to my Interview with Chelsea Shepherd here:
Interview with Chelsea Shepherd, The Climate Corporation