Select Germplasm, Hybrids and Precision Placement
"If someone says, we'll take a script for the selected hybrid and field and use it with a different hybrid in that field, it won't work," said Rhylander. "It won't even work for other DeKalb hybrids. Each of the four or five hybrids recommended for a particular field will have a different script based on our science."
Photo courtesy MonsantoResearch suggests 50 percent of farmers have iPads for receiving VRT planting information. Receiving the final script is only one of the benefits Brand sees with the program. Perhaps more important for the dealership was the time spent with the grower. "It was a very interactive process, both gathering the information and selecting the hybrid," he said. "Monsanto didn't just take the information and deliver a script and hybrid to use. We spent a lot of time with the grower discussing field potential and challenges and setting parameters for growth. It led to deeper conversations about how we fertilize, what the root environment is and questions about tillage. It has strengthened the relationship between us, the grower, DeKalb and IFS."
DATA TRANSFER IS EASY
Although information gathered and the resulting discussions have been complex, transfer of the data is simple. Monsanto settled on iPads for the vehicle. Industry research indicated approximately 50 percent of farmers already have iPads.
"We will download FieldScripts to farmers via their iPad, which they can then use to transfer the prescription to their 20/20 Seed Sense via the Fieldview app," explained Rhylander. "At the end of the season, they can use the iPad to transfer data back to us for analysis."
The information loop is key to the success of the program and its expansion to the full market in 2014. "It will help us better understand how our hybrids perform in a wider variety of environments, which will lead to better decisions and recommendations in the future," said Rhylander. "This will benefit repeat growers, but also those new to FieldScripts."
Brand noted that the program and the experience garnered have encouraged Agriland FS to look beyond seeds and traits. While it is an awareness that will help the organization serve all its customers, Brand recognized that these new technologies and even the FieldScripts program isn't for everyone.
"We carry three seed corn brands," he said. "We look at what's in the best interest of our growers and what they are looking for. Different growers have different needs and adopt technology differently."
That said, he admitted he hasn't seen other brands offering anything like FieldScripts at this time. "Everyone is looking for something they can bring to the table that is not easily duplicated," said Brand. "That is a challenge. We're excited about what FieldScripts offers our more progressive growers, those who embrace technology. It is a particularly good offering for these growers."