New Year, New Technologies, Same Commitment

Posted: 1/9/2017

Tractor with GPS. Photo Courtesy of Pete Bakken.

At the beginning of every year it seems that most people are focusing on what is new, what changes can be made, and what the future will bring. Farmers are no different. Like most people, farmers are constantly looking to improve.


Farmers’ top priority is high quality care for their land and animals. Today technology and farming go hand in hand. Each year, new technologies are introduced to farming. Tractors with auto-steer, drones, and alerts sent to the smart phone in the farmer’s pocket are all a part of modern farming.


Think about the technology that is part of your daily life. Do you use a computer at work? Do you have a smart phone in your pocket? How about a tablet for reading? Many of us use technology constantly and farmers are no different. Calving season is coming up for many, and although this is still a very busy time on the farm, technology has made it easier. Some farmers have barn cameras to keep an eye on calving cows, and there’s an app for smartphones to keep track of new calves during. During planting or harvest a GPS makes sure that the rows are completely straight and can help determine seeding rates for different parts of the field, which ensures none is wasted. Modern dairy and pork barns keep temperature regulated by computer, and will send an alert to the farmer’s phone if something is wrong inside the barn.


As you can see, farming today is a little different than when our grandparents were starting out. That is a great thing! Technology has enabled efficiency and accuracy to go up, but most importantly these new technologies improve animal care and can help farmers use less land, water, and feed than ever before. Personally, I’m pretty happy about the changes in technology. As far as the phone in my pocket goes, I’m glad that I have a smartphone and not a party line like my grandparents had when they started farming.


Although the equipment has changed farmer’s commitment hasn’t. No matter the technology, farmers are working hard to care for their animals. They are looking for ways to improve soil health, and they are trying to make sure the highest quality product is being delivered to you, the consumer.


2017 is a new year, and it may bring changes on the farm. The one thing that won’t change is farmer’s commitment to their profession. 



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