Doing More with Less

By: Emily Snyder, Farm Credit EXPRESS Relationship Manager

Farmers are always doing more with less. On our farm, we make more milk with fewer cows. I’ve talked to a number of operators who gave up ground but are making more money. More yield with less rainfall. Better weed control with less chemicals. Why?

It’s all thanks to technology. As someone who works in the equipment industry, it’s interesting to watch new innovations emerge and see what sticks around, who adopts it, and how fast. Every year at trade shows, there’s something new that makes you say, “Now why would I need that?” Often, a few years later that technology we questioned becomes common place.

"If you can Focus less on where you’re going, you’ve got more time to watch and manage your boom, air seeder, yield monitor or answer the phone..."

Twenty years ago, auto steer was being introduced at an expensive rate and many were skeptical. Today, it’s everywhere. In fact, about 60-70 percent of crop acreage in North America is farmed with auto steer systems. If you can focus less on where you’re going, you’ve got more time to watch and manage your boom, air seeder, yield monitor or answer the phone. Also, having no overlap provides many benefits, like using less fuel, fertilizer, chemicals, and seed.

Much of our agricultural equipment technology today is aimed at doing more with less: row shut off, curve compensation, variable-rate application equipment, you name it.  For many farmers, that’s old news, but I think we are all amazed at the technology that’s constantly being developed.

There’s no way to touch on all the tools available at our fingertips these days. So often farmers get the stereotype of being antiquated and out-of-date, but really we’re at the forefront of innovation. The media loves to talk about driverless cars, but that’s standard to those of us in the fields. People love the latest and greatest apps and all their phone can do, but can they turn water on or off to their crops from their phone? Are they getting a text from their robotic milker when something’s awry? Or an alert from the monitor in their poultry house?

Another form of innovation is our Farm Credit EXPRESS (FCE) equipment financing program. FCE is available at many local dealerships, providing financing for farm equipment, irrigation systems, equine and ag commodity trailers, offering competitive rates and terms. Visit farmcreditexpress.com or ask your local dealer for information about Farm Credit EXPRESS rates the next time you need to finance a piece of equipment.

Whether you’re up-to-date with ag tech or a little behind, you still have the most important job that only two percent of us are cut out for—feeding the world.

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