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Overview of Digital Technologies Offerings for North American Soybean Producers

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  2018 ASABE Annual International Meeting  1801610.(doi:10.13031/aim.201801610)
Authors:   Jenna K. Lee, John P. Fulton, Kaylee L. Port, Richard T. Colley, III, Joe D. Luck, Matthew J. Darr, Scott A. Shearer
Keywords:   Data, Digital Agriculture, Precision Ag, Soybeans, Technology.

Abstract. Many digital technologies and services are offered to assist North American soybean producers in the optimization of their crop production. Opportunities for capturing and analyzing information related to soybean production methods are made available through the adoption of these technologies. However, often it is difficult for producers to know which digital tools and services are available to them or understand the value they can provide. The objective of this study was to assimilate and categorize current digital technologies available to producers today and understand how they are being used and potential value they can provide.

Over 100 currently available digital technologies were sorted into six categories that included: Data Warehousing, Production Benchmarking, Production Analysis, In-Season Monitoring, Crop Modeling, and Recommendations. Categorizing these technologies provided; 1) a clearer understanding of technology implementation, 2) an alignment of a digital technology to a producer‘s intended use if adopted, and 3) insight to producers considering these digital technologies.

A farmer survey was administered along with interviews of agriculture technology experts. Results were then summarized and analyzed. Survey results indicated that 70% of producers are confident that their data is valuable and 91% are actively using technology in soybean production. While these technologies are being adopted, many producers expressed concerns about the potential added value, data management logistics, and disconnects between technology providers and end users. Results of this study provide insight for soybean producers on the implementation and use of current and future digital technologies.

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