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Farmers have the power, 2017 and beyond

03 Jan 2017
by Todd Sears

POSTED IN Education POSTED IN SureTrack POSTED IN American farm POSTED IN Technology POSTED IN independent farm

Farmers have the power, 2017 and beyond

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They who own the dirt have the power.

That’s a bold statement. But it’s one that we at IntelliFarms believe in and preach about. And it’s a statement that we’re willing to dig our heels in and fight for as this industry evolves.

At the half-dozen educational workshops we’ve held since the 2016 harvest, we like to start off the conversation talking about the pressures that the independent farmer today faces. Farming is full of stresses that are outside of a farm’s control -- from volatile global markets, to supplier consolidation, to government regulation, even the real scarcity of water. I fear that the industry is setting itself up to weed out many independent farmers, accelerating a troubling transition to a world of consolidated corporate farms. That's an industry I don't want to be in.

Here’s the thing though – by 2050, we have 9 billion mouths to feed. And nowhere in this world produces the quantity and quality of food that the American farmers do. Every day, it is the independent farmer who plays a critical role to fill our global food supply chain. Every inch of soil is vital to helping to feed our world – you can’t manufacture more farmland.

That’s why they who own the dirt have the power. It’s time for farms to “own” that mentality and utilize tools available to ensure that they are fairly compensated for the important work they do.

So what are some of those tools? At IntelliFarms, our products recognize that data and technology play a huge role today in helping to increase efficiencies and yields on today’s farms – YieldFax for fact-based seed selection, FieldDataManager for field-specific soil and weather insights, BinManager (and other storage tools) for successful monitoring and management of stored grain and MarketManager and CashBidManager for market and cash bid insights to get you the biggest bang for your buck at sale. All are designed and continually optimized with the farmer in mind.

We’ve created these tools to harness as much farm data as possible. And there are other tools and products out there that have that same mission. Our products must also pass the test of  basic questions -- Is it easy, is it actionable, is it going to help farmers do their job better and make money? Now, it is time for the next step.

2017 is the beginning of a new era for IntelliFarms. Our SureTrack approach.

Everything a farm grows is for a reason and with an end-use for the people who buy it, whether that is soybeans for oil, corn for starch, durum for pasta or rice for baby food. And those buyers want high quality more than anything and are willing to pay for it. With the power of technology, we now have been able to build  the SureTrack platform for both farmers and buyers to work together to produce quality food.

For farmers, the SureTrack Farm online platform helps select, manage and deliver a high quality crop utilizing a variety of tools, including BinManager. SureTrack Farm also helps build relationships with buyers looking for high-quality grain.

SureTrack Pro gives processors and buyers the oversight they need to see the quantity and quality of their grain across their operation. With farmers' consent, the SureTrack Farm and SureTrack Pro platforms allows farms and processors to work together to bring the right quantity of grain to market with the high-quality characteristics buyers need (high-protein, high-starch, good germ, etc.).

And what's the SureTrack benefit to the farmer? Well-managed, high-quality grain that’s highly valued and compensated accordingly.

So often the industry just focuses on quantity – look how we can create higher and higher yields (at efficient input costs)! For IntelliFarms, we believe the successful independent farmer will separate and empower their operation by focusing on quality, even more than quantity.

I’ll continue to provide more detail about the SureTrack platform in upcoming posts. I wanted to kick off the year with a strong statement and a clear vision on how IntelliFarms is approaching the changing ag industry.

We believe that SureTrack can help farms secure a competitive future, and that farmers realize that they really are in power.