Morning Farm Report Puts Weather on Doorstep

June 11, 2015 07:01 AM
Morning Farm Report Puts Weather on Doorstep

It’s a weather package delivered right to a grower’s doorstep. Morning Farm Report (MFR), produced by Agrible, is a feature-rich platform that details weather-related conditions on farms and predicts how those conditions will change to affect crops and growing operations, allowing growers to look forward and make actionable decisions based on MFR information.

“On a desktop, iPhone or tablet, we work hard to make sure when a grower wakes up, the latest and most crucial information directly related to their farming practices is ready for them each morning,” says Chris Harbourt, Agrible CEO.

The platform consists of four products that take a wealth of weather information, combined with soil data on a given operation, and interpret agronomic conditions around a farm. MFR relays the information to growers in a practical, simple manner. The system is designed for growers that work 500 to 10,000 acres.

The first product, Rainfall, tracks rain data and is free for the 2015 season. Growers receive a precise precipitation report – field by field. It includes rainfall from the last 10 years and rainfall that occurred the previous day. Rainfall shows a grower how he sits compared to neighbors, as well as overall county and state averages. “Growers used Rainfall to make grain decisions about when to sell throughout a season. They can see where they’re sitting relative to others in the market and where prices might go.”

Field Intel, the next product in the line, adds historic temperature data, rainfall and temperature forecasts -- and a growing degree day prediction. A third product is Tractor Time, which looks at the rainfall forecast, temperature, soil conditions, soil history, and crop growth to predict whether a producer can efficiently drive a tractor, combine, track machine, or ATV in a given field. Tractor Time predicts what ground pressure soils can handle – not just on the current day, but for a full two weeks into the future.

The final facet is Yield Engine, a yield estimator for corn and soybeans. (Nine additional crops will shortly be added to Yield Engine.) According to Harbourt, the majority of growers choose all four products: “Most farmers go high-end. When you pick Yield Engine, you get everything else with it. Pick one part of Morning Farm Report, and get the others below it. Our pricing is a flat-rate -- $1,500 per year per grower for Yield Engine. That’s an unlimited number of fields and acres. If you back off the Yield Engine package, it scales down to several hundred dollars for the lowest products.”

Harbourt emphasizes not only the delivery of data, but vital predictions for farm use that stretch to the end of a season five or six months away. “We’re not just basing decisions on what happened yesterday. Our differentiator is to take a grower and move him from about two weeks behind to two weeks ahead.”

MFR sources data from proprietary Agrible sources and from government data. “We use public data in the right way – an amazing resource,” Harbourt explains.

Steve Anderson grows corn and soybeans near Shelbyville, Ill., and has used MFR for several months. He lives off-site from his farm and emphasizes the importance of MFR accuracy. “I've known the guys at Agrible for a while; they are fanatical about accuracy and good science. I open the MFR email and quickly scan it. It's nice to have a first-thing-in-the-morning feel for what is going on. I'm sometimes surprised at the variability on farms only 10 or 20 miles apart and it saves a lot of time driving around.”

Anderson says MFR works well for grower who wants to remotely track weather conditions on a given farm or field. “You might want to do that for large operations that are spread out over a big geographic area. I'm just a regular farmer who wants to minimize the time it takes to run and check rain gauges or scout soil conditions to see if I can run machinery.”

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Spell Check

Shelbyville, IL
6/11/2015 09:28 PM

  Sounds like a great tool under development!


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