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Browsing Category Precision Farming

Bill Menkveld, Greentronics

From Field-to-Storage-to-Field

Tracking seed potatoes is the way of the future. Advanced harvest and storage mapping technology now allows accurate-to-the-truckload tracking of potatoes from where they were grown in a field to exactly where they are stored in a bin. The technology’s on-farm potential is huge: detailed, automated information capture supports more informed agronomic decision making, better storage management, enhanced bio-security, and more. But, tracking field-to-storage is just the beginning. Tracking product from seed…

Bill Menkveld, Greentronics

Field and Storage Mapping on the Vander Zaag Farm

Ontario potato farmers Kate and Peter Vander Zaag were among the first to adopt potato yield monitoring and, more recently, field-to-storage load tracking and mapping. Tech-savvy producers who prioritize quality, the Vander Zaags believe capturing quality information is key to growing better potatoes. I sat down with Kate to hear her perspective. Bill: What made you first consider yield monitoring? Kate: When we started seeing yield maps for grain, we thought immediately…

Bill Menkveld, Greentronics

Field to Storage Traceability

A Benefit to Customers and Producers Alike Many agricultural producers are worried about consumers’, packer/processors’ and governments’ demands for increasingly strict, detailed traceability of agricultural products and production practices. Farmers are justifiably proud of the safe, high-quality, nutritious food they produce. Many are both offended by and resistant to the idea that they should have to track, trace, prove and transparently show their products’ production and movement histories, and are concerned that traceability…

Yield Monitoring: Once You Give it a Try, You’ll Never Look Back

If anything is going to convince a grower to give a new technology a try, it’s positive feedback from other growers. So consider this: in all my years working with producers, I have never yet had a single customer who, after seeing their yield monitoring data for the first time, said: ‘That’s not interesting. I don’t need to see any more.’ Growers always want to see more because yield maps are instantly…

Bill Menkveld, Greentronics

The Nuts and Bolts of Yield Monitoring Technology

Given how important and detailed the data is they provide, you wouldn’t be the first person to assume that potato yield monitors must be confusingly complicated and inaccessibly high-tech. The reality is just the opposite. Root crop yield monitors consist of very few components. With a little patience and some basic wrenching skills, a complete system is quite easy to set-up and calibrate in surprisingly little time. But before you race out,…

Bill Menkveld, Greentronics

A Whole New Reality for Yield Monitoring

If you’re firmly against yield monitoring and think it’ll never have a place in your potato fields, I understand. Twenty years ago when yield monitors first made big waves in agriculture, they didn’t offer much benefit to potato farmers. While the monitors churned out reams of data, most farmers were unsure how to translate that data into useful information. Analysis programs seemed to be designed more for statisticians and computer scientists than…

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