Bayer #AgVocate Initiative a Success

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

fps-16-hollinrakeIt was last year at Farm Progress Show in Illinois that Bayer introduced the AgVocate initiative and vice president of Agricultural Commercial Operations (ACO) Marketing for Crop Science David Hollinrake was pleased to report on its success this year.

“It’s been awesome,” said Hollinrake during the Bayer media luncheon at the show on Tuesday. “So far, we’ve engaged over 5,000 people. We launched the Facebook page just a few months ago and already have 1500 followers. So I’m very proud of what’s happened with the AgVocate program.”

fps-16-bayer-agvocateThis year at Farm Progress Show, visitors to the Bayer tent were invited to vote for the most important issue going forward for food production. “As we think about the demand imperative of how do we feed 10 billion people by 2050 – the preservation of crop protection, honey bee health, other environmental aspects – we’re asking people to vote so that we get a perspective of what they think the most pressing needs are,” said Hollinrake. “The reason this is so important to us is that we can’t be successful unless farmers are successful and unless we understand their needs.”

Learn more in this interview with David: Interview with David Hollinrake, Bayer

2016 Farm Progress Show Photos

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Audio, Bayer CropScience, Farm Progress Show

#FarmProgressShow Runs on @FSServices Fuel

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

There are lots of vehicles and farm equipment on the grounds at the Farm Progress Show and it’s GROWMARK FS and STAR Energy that keep them all running.

fps-16-fs-jason“Not only do we offer the fuel for the field demonstrations, we also do all the generators, the air conditioning and power in the tents, but also during the set up,” says STAR Energy retail fuel manager Jason Stauffer. “100 percent of the fuel that powers the Farm Progress Show here in Boone comes from GROWMARK STAR Energy.”

Energy is a focus of the FS exhibit at the show, including propane autogas. “We brought a Ford F-150, which is duel-powered, that runs on gasoline and propane,” said Stauffer. “So if you can’t have access to propane, just pull into your gas station and fill it up.”

Learn more about STAR Energy in this interview: Interview with Jason Stauffer, FS Star Energy

2016 Farm Progress Show Photos

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Big Reveals from Case IH at #FarmProgressShow

Kelly Marshall Leave a Comment

Case Antonomous Concept VehicleCase IH is looking in a new direction, focusing on cutting edge innovations with a new tag line- “Rethink Productivity.”  To show they’re serious about rethinking things, Case has also used this opportunity at the Farm Progress Show to unveiled a sleek, new concept vehicle, the autonomous tractor.

“We’re officially adopting ‘Rethink Productivity’ as our North American brand tagline because it embodies both our approach to equipment innovation and our customers’ approach to their operations,” said Tom Dean, marketing director for Case IH North America. “In today’s ag economy, producers know they must focus on achieving the highest level of efficiency if they want to grow and succeed. That’s why we are intensifying our focus on the combination of advanced technologies and agronomic design in the pursuit of High-Efficiency Farming.”

The autonomous tractor concept was developed using the latest in tractor engineering combined with the most advanced technology.  The project is a collaboration with a Utah-based company, Autonomous Solutions Incorporated (ASI).  While this prototype is a cables tractor, executives explained that combines and other equipment could someday operate on the same technology.

“As part of our innovation process, we have worked with CNH Industrial to develop this High-Efficiency Farming concept tractor to demonstrate what it can do and get a reaction from producers,” said Leo Bose, Advanced Farming Systems (AFS) marketing manager. “We just want to know how much interest producers have in these autonomous features, and what else they would like to see from us. It’s not a product launch, by any means. But it could certainly lead to one, or several, down the road.”

Case IH and CNH Industrial’s Innovation Group based the cabless autonomous concept on an existing Case IH Magnum™ tractor with reimagined styling. The vehicle was built for a fully interactive interface to allow for remote monitoring of preprogrammed operations. The onboard system automatically accounts for implement widths and plots the most efficient paths depending on the terrain, obstructions and other machines in use in the same field. The remote operator can supervise and adjust pathways via a desktop computer or portable tablet interface.

Through the use of radar, LiDAR (light imaging, detection, and ranging) and onboard video cameras, the vehicle can sense stationary or moving obstacles in its path and will stop on its own until the operator, notified by audio and visual alerts, assigns a new path. The vehicle will also stop immediately if GPS signal or position data is lost, or if the manual stop button is pushed. Machine tasks can also be modified in real time with remote interface or automatic weather warnings.

“An autonomous tractor like this could seamlessly integrate into an existing farm machinery fleet, with minimal operational changes,” Bose said. “Multiple autonomous vehicles could be put to work in one field or separate fields, on the same tasks or consecutive ones. It could allow a person working with no employees to operate multiple tractors, or could complement very large operations that have challenges finding ample skilled workers.”

Chuck Zimmerman had the opportunity to talk with Leo Bose and got a lot more details about how the tractor runs and how it was designed.  Listen to the interview here:Interview with Leo Bose, Case IH

Watch the big reveal here:

2016 Farm Progress Show Photos

Agribusiness, Case IH, Company Announcement, technology, Tractor

John Deere’s New Nozzles Get the Job Done

Kelly Marshall Leave a Comment

JD Thomas Lydia Thomas is a Product Manger for John Deere, and she’s just the person to talk to if you’re wanting information about John Deere’s new exact apply intelligent nozzle system. I caught up with her at the Farm Progress Show to hear how John Deere has brought a new approach to their traditional sprayer, adding industry exclusives that help growers get the job done.

The John Deere booth included a 120 foot boom, as well as a display spray stand to help demonstrate all the features. The intelligent system means each nozzle gets individual control, but beyond that the system includes 30 hertz pulsing to provide a consistent application throughout a field. LED lights mean applicators can get started earlier and worker later, getting the work they need accomplished when they need to accomplish it. Nozzle switching allows the user to turn off pulsing when necessary and allow for a wider range of working speeds, so you can get a field covered faster.

JD Nozzles Customers are excited to get their hands on this technology, and Thomas says the wait won’t last much longer. This nozzle will be an option on 2018 sprayer models.

“JD is dedicate to precision agriculture,” Thomas told me.  “We have a factory installed solution for them, so they can have a green-on-green solution.”

Hear Lydia’s in-depth interview here to learn more: Interview with Lydia Thomas, John Deere

2016 Farm Progress Show Photos

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Agribusiness, Audio, Farm Progress Show, John Deere, Spraying

Agrible Adds 5 New Crops to Find My Seed

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Agrible logoAgrible, Inc. has expanded its free Find My Seed™ tool to include five additional crop types. In addition to corn and soybeans, Find My Seed now includes thousands of varieties of wheat, barley, peanuts, oats, and cotton. The update also adds the latest third-party seed trials to ensure that growers receive the most accurate seed data available.

“Corn and soybean growers provided such a positive response to Find My Seed that we knew we needed to extend its reach to different crops,” said Agrible CEO Chris Harbourt. “There is no other tool on the market that offers this much utility for this many crops that really drills down to the details in seed selection.”

Find My Seed combines data from over 300,000 third-party seed trial plots from universities, independent researchers, and other third-party entities. This data, covering 23,000 different seed varieties, is then curated, standardized, and made easily searchable.

“Seed choice is one of the biggest, most expensive decisions a grower can make, and seed traits changes more quickly than almost any other farming technology,” said Paul Miller, Chief Science Officer of Agrible. “By combining all of this data into Find My Seed, growers can finally be informed about the productivity of their seed choice for their soils, for their area, and for the needs of their operation with an unbiased tool.”

Find My Seed is part of the Morning Farm Report suite of predictive analytics tools. These tools are designed to help growers make the best decisions on their operations. Find My Seed is available for free at, and integrates with other tools found in Morning Farm Report.

Visit Agrible at Farm Progress Show this week – Exhibit #551

seed, technology

Water Conservation Strategy Announced at FPS

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Two years ago several Iowa-based agricultural groups launched the Iowa Agriculture Water Alliance (IAWA). Today during the 2016 Farm Progress Show, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey announced the organization’s new Conservation Infrastructure Strategy to assist in the identification of economic development opportunities associated with achieving the goals of the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy. The IAWA also announced the formation of a new IAWA Business Council that will be co-chaired by Northey and Ray Gaesser, a farmer from Corning, Iowa and past-president of the American Soybean Association.

fps-16-northey-IAWA-presserMany of the ag businesses located in Iowa and doing business here are already leading the way in integrating water quality efforts into their business and bringing new tools to farmers to help them keep nutrients on their farm,” said Northey during a press conference launching the new initiative. “This new effort is focused on seeing if there are opportunities to support additional business development as we continue to scale-up efforts to improve water quality and maintain the tremendous productivity of Iowa agriculture.

As part of the effort, the Business Council will identify current gaps in conservation/business infrastructure as well as develop an action plan focused on accelerated implementation of conservation practices focused on water quality. The action plan will focus on identifying economic drivers and market-based solutions to improving water quality and quantifying both the public and private benefits associated with successful implementation of water quality practices.

fps-16-IAWA-presserPreserving and enhancing Iowa’s resources benefits everyone,” Gaesser noted in his remarks. “This is really figuring out the additional expertise and finance needed to help farmers continue improving water quality while meeting the global needs of feeding people. Adapting requires continual research, inspiration, education and action. There’s opportunity in that for farmers and the business community.

IAWA Executive Director Sean McMahon said that the IAWA Business Council, will play a key role in helping to shape the conservation infrastructure strategy along with the existing IAWA Advisory Council. “We look forward to partnering with the Iowa Department of Agriculture and our many other highly valued partners to help align public and private efforts and identify business opportunities to improve Iowa’s water quality and strengthen rural communities.

Listen to the press conference here: IAWA Launches Conservation Strategy Presser

2016 Farm Progress Show Photos

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Audio, Conservation, water

Bayer CEO is Home at #FarmProgressShow

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

fps-16-bayer-blomeThe president and CEO of Bayer North America is always happy to visit the Farm Progress Show when it is in Iowa.

“I grew up on a farm just north of here in Hubbard, Iowa, graduate of Iowa State, and it’s always good to come home,” said Jim Blome during the traditional Bayer media luncheon on the first day of the show. “This year more than any other year, I’ve noticed one thing – corn really loves to grow in Iowa.”

During the media event, Blome talked about Bayer’s commitment to innovation in agriculture. “We’ve been around ag a long time…we know it’s a cyclical market, but we’re investing in innovation for the long term.”

Listen to Blome’s remarks to the media here: Jim Blome, president and CEO Bayer North America

With the negotiations between Bayer and Monsanto ongoing, that topic was off the table during remarks and interviews, but Blome believes Bayer is uniquely positioned as a company to help farmers feed a growing global population. “It’s our 150 years of innovation,” he said. “We spend over a billion dollars a year in R&D and our investments have paid off. We’ve brought more innovation to the grower over the past 10 years than any of our competitors and we’re very proud of that.”

Listen to my interview with Jim here: Interview with Jim Blome, Bayer North America

2016 Farm Progress Show Photos

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Audio, Bayer CropScience, Farm Progress Show

Eight Row Folding Corn Head Unveiled by @JohnDeere

Kelly Marshall Leave a Comment

John Deere folding 8 row headBrand new from John Deere is an option for an 8-row folding corn head.  The 608FC corn head can be used with group 6 and 7 S-Series combines, offering an easier solution for transporting on narrow roads.  It also eliminates the need for header trailers, tow vehicles and related manpower.

“Harvesting with a new John Deere 8 row folding corn head can lower operating costs and allow customers to harvest addition acres per move by not having to transport the head separately,” explains Roger Maes, senior marketing representative fore John Deere Harvester Works.  “That helps contribute to their bottom line and make them much more productive and profitable.”

The new head is offered in 30-inch row spacing with or without the stalk chopping option.  Like all heads in the 600 series it also has improved row unit slip clutch and drive shaft interface to help it hold up against today’s robust hybrids.

“The 608FC is the ideal green-on-green header solution for customers that need to drive down narrow roads to access fields they need to harvest, without having to transport the head separately,” Maes says.  “It’s much more durable, productive and economical option than other folding 8-row headers currently available, plus it’s fully supported by the extensive John Deere dealer network.”

Chuck Zimmerman was on hand to see the grand unveiling and took video of the corn head folding, coming to a rest at 10.9 feet wide– narrower than the inside set of tires.

Listen to his interview here: Kevin Ripple, John Deere

Corn, Equipment, Harvesting, John Deere

Great First Day for #FarmProgressShow

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

fps-16-tourteDon Tourte, VP of Sales for the Farm Progress Show kicked off the 63rd annual event in the BASF Media Tent this morning. He gave media a bit of a show preview and noted that the exhibitors look as good as ever and highlighted how they have gone all out this year.

“There are some really great things to see with technology being the leading word,” said Tourte.

And the weather? Better than two years ago and Tourte said the crops for the field demonstrations look great and encouraged everyone to be sure to get down and see new technologies in action.

Listen to an interview with Don Torte here: Interview with Don Tourte, Farm Progress Show

2016 Farm Progress Show Photos

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Audio, Farm Progress Show

Ag Infrastructure Challenge Launched at #RuralSummit

Joanna Schroeder Leave a Comment

The inaugural Infrastructure Summit took place yesterday in Ames, Iowa with big news – the launch of the agriculture Infrastructure Vision 2050 (IV2050) Challenge. The news was delivered by Lief Magnusson, President, CLASS Global Sales Americas and Chair of the Association Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) who sponsored the summit with support from Agri-Pulse. IV2050 is a thought leadership initiative focused on crafting a vision for a long-term, national plan for U.S. infrastructure and how the industry will move people, freight and energy in the future.


Leif Magnusson, President, CLASS Global Sales Americas and Chair, Association of Equipment Manufacturers announces AEM’s IV2050 ag initiative during the inaugural Rural Infrastructure Summit.

AEM is playing an active role in discussions about what is next for the U.S. infrastructure,” said Magnusson who stressed that today the industry is here to explore the link between agriculture and infrastructure and to asses where things stand. “We’re also here to discuss the challenges the ag industry and rural communities face with the current state of U.S. infrastructure. But just as importantly, we’re here to discuss ways to innovate through and around challenges as an ag community.”

In addition to the Rural Infrastructure Summit, the discussion will continue through a new initaitve Magnusson announced: the IV2050 Challenge. The initiative is a call for proposals on the best and most innovative ways to transport goods in the future. “The idea is highlight the most groundbreaking ideas on how to move ag commodities will be moved from farm to market thirty-five years from now,” explained Magnusson.

Magnusson said the competition is open to all AEM members and employees as well as thought leaders from around the country. To learn more about the IV2050 Challenge and how to submit your proposal, click here.

Learn more about IV2050 by listening to Leif Magnusson’s remarks here: Leif Magnusson Remarks at #RuralSummit

2016 Rural Infrastructure Summit Photo Album

AEM, Agribusiness, Audio, Events