From the Ground Up - Technology and Agriculture

With the growing demand for food and fiber from an increasing global population, agriculture is continually challenged to do more with less.

One of the things necessary to make this happen is technology.

“The use of the satellites to tell you where the fertility is, where your spots are maybe needing more fertilizer, learning it from the sky. Used to, tractors didn’t have cabs to begin with. Now they’ve got all sorts of GPS and everything to keep your rows straight, to tell you what you’re planting per acre. Combines are that way. How much is the combine bringing in per acre. The brand new combine, you look inside it, and it was a touch screen instead of all those knobs and levers.”

Terrell Wiese farms and ranches in Milam and Williamson counties, and says there’s no doubt that technology makes a farmer more efficient.

“The combines nowadays, you don’t have to worry about if you’ve got a streak of grain, if you’ve got a leak or something it’s telling you that something’s not working in the machine. The planters, and everything, it’s amazing that, they’re not just giving away seed corn any more. And if you’re putting out to much for what you’re doing, that away you’d be wasting money if you’re overdoing what you wanted to do.”

And whether we’re talking about a pickup or a new state of the art piece of equipment, you’re grand daddy would be amazed.

“When you have somebody work on your vehicle in the shop, they may not work on it with a crescent wrench, they work on it with a lap top. Nowadays, the guys that come and work on the tractors, the mechanics, they have to know a s much about a computer as everybody. They bring their laptop out to tell you or tell, the tractor will tell them what’s wrong, before we get started.”

But technology isn’t cheap.

“No, they’re not giving you the keys to a new tractor or nothing like that. Technology costs money. We don’t all drive brand new combines, brand new tractors or anything like that. The financing, it’s not the easiest. Some people have went to a second job and tried to farm and ranch at the same time. It does stretch you a little thin when you start doing that.”

I’m Kailey Carey, looking at Brazos Valley agriculture, From The Ground Up.

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