Precision Farming Technologies Improve Profits

Kurt LawtonGeneral

NEATAThe message that technology of precision farming allows greater efficiency was heard loud and clear from presenters at the ninth annual Nebraska Agricultural Technologies Association conference, recently held in Grand Island.

As reported in the Grand Island Independent, Program coordinator and University of Nebraska Extension educator Dave Varner, says Nebraska farmers are on the cutting edge.

“Our Nebraska farmers are among the leaders in the nation in adopting these new technologies, such as the GPS auto steer technology that has taken the industry by storm,” Varner said.

Along with improving operational efficiencies, Varner said farmers are now farming more acres with fewer resources and “they are looking to get more profit out of each acre.”

“This technology allows them to look at each acre individually and to fine-tune their inputs and to really monitor their yields year-in-and-year-out to see, over the long run, what farming operations and inputs are returning on their investments,” Varner said.

An example of how improved technology has increased agricultural productivity is the ever-increasing yields of corn and soybeans over the last decade despite weather challenges, such as drought, strong winds, heavy rains and flooding.

Varner also sees big technology strides being made in water use efficiency. “You are going to see this technology turning toward water conservation and efficiency,” he said. “You will see the introduction of technologies that will help farmers keep track of evapotranspiration by field rather than by the region,” Varner said. “You will see them doing it at home, via their cell phone. They will have farm networks that will not only monitor farm moisture and irrigation systems, but other aspects of their farming operations.”