The CropLife/Purdue Precision Agriculture survey is back after taking a year off and revealing the latest precision trends.
The survey, conducted this year by marketing consultant Dr. Linda D. Whipker and Purdue’s Dr. Bruce Erickson, was first conducted 16 years ago, when precision technologies were just entering the market. “After 16 years, the biggest change that has occurred is that many of these methods of serving the agricultural community and growing crops have become so common place that they aren’t thought of as unique any more,” they report. “However, the rapid improvements in technologies and how they’re implemented into everyday business continues to grow.”
CropLife’s Paul Schrimpf came up with 10 key trends from the latest survey, including that precision technology is becoming mainstream. “A curious “trend” expressed in the survey results was that the number of retailers offering precision agriculture “services” appears to be dropping in key categories, including georeferenced soil sampling and fieldmapping with GIS. Certainly, retailers may be outsourcing these services to other entities, or some growers might be doing some of this work on their own. But we also feel that it’s just as likely an indication that these services have become so integrated into full-service retailers that it’s becoming increasingly difficult to separate it out as an a la carte service. Precision services are packaged up into a larger, more holistic offering.”