Kinze Manufacturing, Inc. is opening its first production plant abroad in Lithuania. The facility will manufacture Kinze row crop planters, contributing to its growing market in neighboring countries including Russia, Ukraine, Czech Republic, Bulgaria and Hungary. Kinze will hire welders, mechanics, CNC operators and other specialists to work in the new plant. Assembly in this new facility is scheduled to begin this fall.
Kinze also will support local educational institutions in Lithuania by working with universities as well as other professional schools and centers for engineering and production training. It will offer students internships in the manufacturing facility as well as hands-on learning opportunities in advanced manufacturing technology and production processes
The app, called VRPETERS (Vehicle Rollover Prevention Education Training Emergency Reporting System), uses sensors and GPS capability built into smartphones that can detect rollovers. Once the app detects a rollover, it sends an automatic emergency e-mail and phone message with the coordinates of the accident location to family or emergency responders.
“The tractor is the main power source for field operations, and tractor rollover accidents have been killing people since the beginning of their use in agricultural production,” said Bulent Koc, assistant professor of agricultural systems management at MU and developer of the app. “More and more farmers are using their smartphones to monitor weather or calculate production inputs while operating machinery. Since they already have their phones with them, installing VRPETERS could help save lives.”
Data from the NIOSH show that one out of every 10 tractor operators will roll a tractor at least once. NIOSH also notes that only half of the 4.7 million tractors on U.S. farms have rollover protection. In order to minimize false alarm rollovers on the app, Koc and his research assistant Bo Liu designed a device that must be attached to the tractor. This device helps calculate the stability characteristics of the tractor and will provide a warning to the driver when the tractor approaches its rollover point.
Valley Irrigation, the leader in precision irrigation, introduces the addition of QuickStart (QS) prescription writing to its Variable Rate Irrigation (VRI) product, allowing growers to customize their water application throughout their field.
The Valley VRI Agronomy Team develops the one-time, custom QS prescription based on soil maps, aerial imagery, yield data and other relevant information about the field provided by the grower. When this information is provided with new orders, the QS prescription is preloaded in new Valley Select2 and Pro2 control panels. QS prescriptions are also available to growers with existing center pivots wanting to utilize Variable Rate Irrigation through panel upgrades and by using TrackNET and BaseStation2™ products.
Along with their field-specific, custom prescription, growers will also receive a copy of the Valley VRI Prescription Software. With this program, growers have the ability to modify and generate their own prescriptions as field conditions and crop requirements change. In addition, they can work with other precision ag companies to further enhance their VRI Prescriptions.
Dr. Terry Kastens is an Emeritus Professor from Kansas State University. He’s back to farming now and spoke during a Learning Center Session at Commodity Classic sponsored by John Deere. The session topic was “Better Data, Better Decisions: the ROI of Smart Machine Technology.
One of the first points Dr. Karstens makes is that every new technology requires an investment. That provides an opportunity for larger farms who can spread their investment out over more acres, or units of production. This is why you would expect larger farms to adopt new technology quicker than smaller farms. He says that we can expect to see more consolidation in row crop farms analogous to what we’ve seen in the livestock industry.
Another point made in the presentation was that some technologies are adopted at a rapid rate and others at a much slower rate. In the precision ag sector an example of quick adoption is the use of yield monitors. But he says that making sense out of yield monitor data and actually varying rates of fertilizer as one example are being adopted much slower.
Now here’s a precision piece of equipment you might not think about but it’s definitely a time and money saver – as well as a “man saver.”
Rohrer Manufacturing is celebrating the 15-year anniversary of its trademarked Man Saver Post Driver, a multi-directional air-powered portable fence post driver for farmers, ranchers, vineyards, construction centers, highway, and public works departments.
Inventor Dan Rohrer says they have sold 16,000 of his post drivers since 1998 and sales continue to climb 10-15% annually. “We are proud of our success and satisfaction of fulfilling an unmet demand for fence post drivers, most notably in the agricultural and ranching industry. Named “Man Saver Post Driver™” for a reason, the driver was designed to take the back-breaking labor out of fencing.”
Everyone knows the famous slogan “Nothing Runs Like a Deere” which has been used by the company for decades. But with more John Deere equipment approved for biodiesel, well that slogan needs to be updated a little!
In addition to security benefits for Americans, biodiesel also improves lubricity, reduces sulfur emissions, and reduces aromatics. Biodiesel has a high cetane content for faster ignition. These are just a few of the reasons Deere’s Don Borgman cites for the company approving the use of up to 20% biodiesel (B20) blends in all its equipment.
According to Borgman, when new equipment is ready to leave the factory, it’s filled with a biodiesel blend. Deere has coined this the “biodiesel factory fill.”
The winner of our iPad mini Giveaway Contest has been picked via random selection and he is Nick Leibold of New Hampton, IA. Nick farms about 600 acres of corn and 400 acres of soybeans.
Cindy visited with Nick by phone to let him know about his winning and to learn a little bit about how precision pays for his family farming operation. He says he’s been using precision ag in his farming operation for about ten years now including auto steer, yield monitor and row shutoffs on his planter. He says, “On the planter I’ll do a split variety and that way when I harvest I know which variety is which and I can compare strips across the field. I use it a lot for variety selection.” He uses it to farm more efficiently.
When it comes to his new iPad mini he says his dealer says he can hook up an iPad to help him record the different varieties he’s planting and then take it out to the field later when he’s scouting and find spots where he has been.
Nick is also very involved with the Iowa Corn Growers serving on the Iowa Corn Promotion Board. It’s important to him to see that those corn checkoff dollars are being put to good use.
Thank you to everyone who has entered our contest. The iPad has become an increasingly useful tool for precision farming today. More and more apps are being developed to utilize this mobile technology and we hope Nick will find the iPad mini a great addition to his toolbox!
What do you think of our first contest? Want to see more product giveaways? Chime in using comments and let us know.
One way to make it pay is through PERC’s Propane Farm Incentive Program. “A farmer can actually get a rebate from us,” explained Mark Leitman, Director of Business Development and Marketing. “We just ask for some information to be submitted back to us after one growing season to tell us about the technology and ways that we might improve it in the future.”
Leitman says there is a lot of enthusiasm about propane now because of its lower price compared to diesel. “We got a lot of opportunities fro farmers to learn more about propane and ways they can use new technology on the farm and take advantage of propane’s low costs and environmental attributes and lower their costs of operation,” he said.
“Grain drying and building heating continues to be some of the bigger uses, but we are seeing a huge growth in the amount of engines being powered by propane. In the ag sector, irrigation engines, is a low hanging fruit for us. It’s easy to place the engines, easy to place the tanks and it’s easy for the propane marketers to deliver. So, we are really promoting propane as an engine fuel in that application. Plus there’s opportunities for trunks, lawn mowers and advance deficiency grain dryers. Just lots and lots of ways propane can be used on the farm.”
The Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) is revving up the 2013 Commodity Classic trade show in Orlando this week with powerful irrigation engines that can help producers save money, meet their emissions reduction goals, and become less dependent on imported oil.
PERC will display new propane-fueled engines for irrigation and register producers for more than $4,000 in propane equipment incentives through the Propane Farm Incentive Program. Producers visiting PERC at booth 938 during the trade show can also participate in PERC’s “Land the Grand” promotion for a chance to win $1,000 or a new propane gas grill.
New research shows that propane-fueled irrigation engines cost up to 14 percent less to purchase and operate than diesel models. Propane fuel burns cleaner and more efficiently than traditional fuels, decreasing deposits on engine components and reducing toxic greenhouse gas emissions by up to 24 percent compared with diesel.
Farmers interested in powerful and efficient new propane-fueled irrigation engines can check out the Ford 6.8-liter industrial propane engine from Engine Distributors Inc. at the booth and apply for an incentive to purchase one.
The Propane Farm Incentive Program, sponsored by PERC, lowers the initial cost of purchasing a new EPA-certified propane-fueled irrigation engine, offering producers a $400 incentive per liter of engine displacement up to 10.3 liters, or $4,120. As part of the research and demonstration initiative, eligible farmers report on performance data for at least one season. Feedback from the program helps inform future product development.
If you’ve been active in farm social media any time since last night then you have to know about a great Super Bowl commercial from Ram Trucks in alliance with sister company Case IH. Just in case you haven’t then here you go. In our newest Ram brand commercial, we dedicate 2013 to celebrating the American farmer. Share the video, and join the Ram brand throughout the year as we celebrate the people, the food and the lifestyle that keep America growing.
WELCOME TO THE YEAR OF THE FARMER.
And just to sweeten it a little bit how about helping the FFA?
You watch the video, you share a badge, the Ram brand makes a donation. Help us raise $1 million to support FFA and assist in local hunger and educational programs.
So watch the commercial. It’s worth it just to listen to broadcast legend Paul Harvey!
Precision agriculture products will be on display next week at the 2013 AG CONNECT Expo & Summit. The show runs January 29 to 31 in Kansas City, MO. Yours truly will be there taking photos and conducting interviews to share. ZimmComm New Media is proud to be the official new media sponsor of the show once again. While I am attending Expo, Cindy will be attending the Iowa Power Farming Show in Des Moines courtesy of our sponsor, Ag Leader Technology. So expect some good stories next week.
To get a preview of the AG CONNECT Expo I visited with Rusty Fowler, official Expo spokesperson and President/CEO, Krone NA. Rusty says to expect a show “that’s different from other trade shows that you normally go to.” He says it is different because they started out to make it different. The idea for the show goes back a number of years even before the first Expo when a group of ag executives got together to create a show “made by the industry for the industry.” It is different because the attending customer will be able to talk with top people at the companies who are exhibiting. This is a commitment each exhibitor has made. Rusty’s interview is the subject of my weekly podcast, the ZimmCast.
Have you wondered how to measure the return on decisions you make like the choice in tractor tires? How to keep track of how, when, where you did maintenance on your equipment? eMaint Enterprises has a solution. I learned about it in a conversation with Rona Palmer.
When it comes to farming, eMaint offers farmers a system to keep track of equipment maintenance and it can be scaled from a one user, one tractor operation to a very large fleet operation. The first thing I learned is what CMMS stands for (see below). Rona says the system is very user friendly and that you don’t need a degree in computer management to use their service. Service plans start at $40/month. The service is managed by web browser access which you can do from any internet connected computer or tablet or smartphone. Find out more about how eMaint can help you and your farming operation in my conversation with Rona.
eMaint Enterprises has been providing innovative CMMS (Computerized Maintenance Management Software) solutions since 1986. eMaint was one of the first CMMS providers to develop a completely web-based “Software as a Service” (SaaS) model for more rapid implementation at a lower total cost of ownership.
Our growing client-base consists of over 16,000 users worldwide across 1,000 sites ranging from small & medium sized organizations to Fortune 500 corporations including manufacturers, service providers, fleet operators, energy and utility companies, health care facilities, universities, municipalities, and facility and property managers, among others.
Want to see the latest and greatest innovation in farm equipment? You don’t have to leave the Midwest. The Iowa Power Farming Show is the first and best opportunity to get the scoop on new products that can boost your operation to greater
efficiency and profitability.
More than 750 ag-related companies will be on hand to receive the expected 20,000 visitors in the heart of farm country. Knowledgeable sales staff at 1,840 engaging exhibitor booths can show you the latest in farm equipment and precision ag electronics. Put on your walking shoes and explore three state-of the-art facilities with six floors of displays.
The 2013 Iowa Power Farming Show is January 29-31 at the Iowa Events Center located in Des Moines, Iowa.
* Ag Leader Technology will sponsor ZimmComm coverage of the event.
In collaboration with Agrievolution Alliance, AEM in 2013 will support agriculture member companies in the international marketplace with an educational forum in India.
Agrievolution Alliance, a global coalition of agriculture equipment manufacturing associations for which AEM serves as the secretariat, announced that the 2013 Agrievolution Forum will be held December 5-6, 2013, at the Hotel Taj Mahal in New Delhi, India.
It has established an industry issues committee to determine future outreach; its economic committee shares data on global regions represented by participants; and it has developed an alliance website for information exchange – www.agrievolution.com.
The alliance was launched in the shared belief of participants that issues and challenges in the agricultural economy should be viewed from a global perspective and acted upon on a global basis.
“We are using precision agriculture. We started about 2001. The first step we thought we would do was get a yield monitor and work from there. Over in our county the conservation district had some programs to encourage people to use precision based fertilizer. We went in thinking we were going to ease into it using only yield monitors for records. But quickly moved to grid sampling and variable rate application of phosphate in about a years time.”
Bob’s farm was part of the hard hit areas in terms of the drought. He shared how his crop yields were almost cut in half and how they are making it through these tough times.
“We’ve got a corn/soybean operation. We were in an area that was hit pretty hard by the drought. Corn yields were pretty low. Soybeans were lucky catching some late August rains. Soybeans were about 3/4 of a crop and corn 1/4 of a crop.”
Bob said they jumped into the use of new technologies to save money, but he admits he has also saved lots of time and his body has thanked him. He enjoys coming in of an evening without all the aches and pains he was once use to.