A privately owned company that specializes in precision agronomic consulting and has developed data management technologies has become an affiliate of the Purdue Research Park.
Advanced Ag Solutions LLC was founded in 2006 by Daryl Starr, CCA, a Purdue University graduate. The company has 13 employees that provide services including on-farm research, fertility management, seed selection, GPS crop scouting and GPS soil sampling in Indiana and eastern Illinois. The company's clients include both farmers and seed companies.
"We work with high-tech, progressive farmers that have employees and want to grow, with most farmer-clients averaging around 2,000 to 7,000 acres. We also work with seed companies and software and product retailers in various affiliate agreements," said Starr, president of the company. "Most clients currently are located in a 150-mile range of Lafayette, but we have plans in place to develop dealers outside of this territory."
Starr said growing farms continually face challenges in data management related to their agronomic processes. These challenges are compounded as more acreage and technology are added.
"As a third party, my colleagues and I gather, assemble and guide decisions on the farm using in-field collection, data processing and specialized software support," he said.
Advanced Ag Solutions helps farmers manage spatial variability of soil fertility by collecting soil samples and then performing chemical, physical and biological analyses. Custom prescriptions based on soil test results, yield data and client management practices are built that allow farmers to apply products at varying rates in the field.
The company also has built seed selection software, named Optimizer, to help clients build crop plans and mesh their criteria with variety performance data by soil type, location and logistical preferences. These crop plans can then drive seed purchase and placement decisions.
The company currently is expanding its on-farm research program, branded Next Level Projects.
"Our clients face tremendous challenges in finding trustworthy sources of data but still want and need on-farm experience with products and usage rates," Starr said. "We facilitate on-farm research by designing simple trials that utilize a farmer's precision ag equipment. We then follow up with GPS crop scouting throughout the season, followed by analysis of the yield monitor data, all of which is presented in a concise report for our clients' use. We are excited to include sponsors in this offering now as well. Our clients and sponsors soon will be learning faster and with greater trust from well-documented on-farm experience."
Starr said becoming an affiliate of the Purdue Research Park is another step in Advanced Ag Solutions' statement of value toward learning and networking.
"Purdue University and Purdue Research Park have a proven track record of developing and launching new science and processes," he said. "I moved the business to Lafayette to be nearer Purdue University for this reason and for the stream of quality employees that I knew we would need. We believe the affiliation with Purdue's national and international presence will help us achieve our expansion goals."