Control what you can to control what you can’t.
For those in the agriculture industry, data collection is important. It allows us to manage costs and inventory, drive decisions, and better control the uncontrollable – weather and markets. It also allows us to track historical patterns and become better stewards of the land.
The data collection process can be as simple or as in-depth as you would like it to be. Typically, monitors in the cab collect the field data and allow users to export the data into a computer program for safe-keeping and analytics. There are multiple financial tracking software programs to track income and expenses, and a simple search online would result in current and historical weather reports, market information, and economy updates.
Data Use in Decision Making:
After the data is collected, analysis begins. This task can be overwhelming, so it is best to start small and simple at the field level.
- What hybrid performed best?
- Did that fungicide application pay for itself?
- Is the soil sample information showing a major deficiency in potassium?
From there, start to ask deeper questions:
- Why did that hybrid perform best?
- Was the placement right?
- How did your planter perform?
- Did you select the right planting date?
- How did weather impact your crop? We usually see fungicide easily pay for itself, but was it the product, or the timing, or both?
- Maybe your data is showing a few concerning deficiencies….which nutrient or soil quality should be corrected first? Is it deficient across the field or only in a few places?
From here, a bigger picture starts to form and allows growers to see what exactly is happening in their field and allows them to make the decisions necessary to maximize their profits. This data, when used correctly, will help drive those difficult decisions to combat the uncontrollable factors that are getting harder to track.
Data Solutions from your Agronomist
When it comes to collecting and storing data, we offer various soil sampling options, data collection devices such as Climate FIeldview, and a team of highly trained specialists who can assist with monitor and data issues. We also use our in-house software, FieldReveal, to store the data for growers and allow our agronomists to access this information for better recommendations.
Lastly, we offer a variety of analytics for future decision making and nutrient management. This can be across the whole field or down to a single management zones in the field. We can use this data to create prescriptions for seed, fertilizer, and crop protection. With Climate Fieldview, we can easily analyze yield data, track weather patterns, and create reports that are easy to understand.