Every day, I read about a new tech investment or new firm being launched in the agriculture industry. Ag technology, particularly related to data, is a hot market for new investors and new ideas. You even see people who have made fortunes in Silicon Valley looking to agriculture as their next opportunity. And while I love the enthusiasm and the innovation happening in technology and data, it troubles me that so much of the investment is happening among those who may see this as a financial opportunity.
I got into agriculture technology and data management with our first product, BinManager, because I couldn’t believe the amount of soybeans I saw either sold at low quality or going to waste because of improper storage practices and conditions. With the right technology and knowledge of the data, I knew farmers could dramatically increase the profit and value of their storage operations.
Over a decade later, that’s still what drives me, and why with all the new players coming into the marketplace, we keep pushing to innovate. Our latest innovation is the next step in grain management, and brings the future to grain storage today at essentially the same cost of current systems.
3G Plus Cables -- Proactive vs. Reactive
In 2008, IntelliFarms became the first company in the grain storage industry to release a moisture sensing cable. We’ve been able to patent the technology and it has made a tremendous difference in our ability and the ability of our customers to successfully manage grain safely and reliably for over seven years.
Between that time and now, the practice has been to have one moisture-sensing cable in the bin accompanied by cables that measure temperature only. Starting this past month, we announced the ability to take our innovative moisture technology one step further – by offering our new 3G Plus Cable system for BinManager. With this new cable offering, every single sensor in every single cable senses both temperature and moisture. More data off of each sensor now can give our customers a three-dimensional understanding of the moisture and temperature conditions across stored grain.
With total management by 3G Plus Cables, proactive decision-making becomes possible. The moisture sensors across the grain can show pockets of grain with higher moisture content, which have the potential to develop into detrimental hot spots. Seeing the potential, BinManager can preemptively address problem areas before damage occurs. With more data to work with, the BinManager system can make even more precise and efficient fan and heater control decisions. The sensors will report data on an hourly basis, an additional feature not offered by any other system in the industry.
And, best of all, because we design and build our technology in our production facility in Archie, MO, we’re able to move to 100% moisture and temperature readings on all sensors for only about 10% additional cost (pending bin dimensions). Over the years, we’d received requests to expand moisture measurement across the bin, but that option had been cost-prohibitive. We are proud to now be at a place where we are able to break through that barrier and offer this innovative technology.
It’s important to note that the way that grain has been managed in the past with separate moisture and temperature cables is not subpar. With this technology, we’ve helped thousands of farms across America successfully manage their grain to targets. But as new technology becomes available and we find there are opportunities to innovate, we push ourselves to do that – and as a result bring more value to our customers.
The Future of Grain Management
I believe the combination of our state-of-the-art Bin Manager and new 3G Plus Cable offering provides the most accurate and efficient grain management system available anywhere. IntelliFarms is leading the way in developing even stronger grain management, helping American farmers be competitive and provide quality grain for food markets that are increasingly concerned about safety.
We’ll continue to innovate, because that’s what our customers demand and that’s what the future of agriculture demands. I see this announcement as just the next step in ensuring the best quality grain coming out of storage, with the least amount of waste, is being brought to market by producers to help meet our planet’s growing food needs.