Archive for June, 2011

Agriculture Apps

There has been a recent stir about farmers using Apps to help them on the farm. It makes sense right? If a stock broker can check the market with the touch of a button, why can’t a farmer check the moisture level in his soil? Well now he can! Ever since Verizon rolled out the iPhone 4 earlier this year, more agriculture Apps have been popping up than ever.

If you have the ability to download and utilize Apps and have yet to do so, you will be by the end of this article. There are Apps for everything from playing Scrabble with your friends around the globe to locating the lowest gas price in your vicinity. These have been around for a few years, but Agriculture Apps have recently been catching on and spreading like a wild fire.

Here are my top 5 favorite FREE Agriculture Apps.

1: SoilWed – GPS based, real-time access to USDA-NRCS soil survey data, formatted for mobile devices. This application retrieves graphical summaries of soil types associated with the user’s current geographical location. Images are linked to detailed information on the named soils.

2: PureSense: Allows user to access information from underground sensors that detect moisture levels near the roots of crops.

3: Dupont Tankmix: Allows you to easily calculate the amount of product you will need to treat a specific field area, the amount of product you need to apply to a specific tank size, the amount of water you will need to treat a specific area or the amount of product you will need to get the desired volume to volume ratio.

4: AGWired: The first agricultural media app for the iPhone. The app offers one-touch access to all the latest news and information in the agribusiness and agricultural marketing world posted on

5: ArcGIS: ArcGIS is a great way to discover and use maps. You can query the map, search and find interesting information, measure distances and areas of interest and share maps with others.

These are just a few in the growing sea of Agriculture Apps. Farmers now have the ability to look up crucial information on their phone, in the field. To think 10 years ago one couldn’t even get DSL in rural areas, mobile technology has come leaps and bounds from where it was just a few years ago. If you could invent an Ag App, what would it be?

Cross-country Tractor Ride to Explore and Share Evolution of Agriculture in Canada

Dr. John Varty, a professor who taught agriculture and environmental history courses through the MacMillan Center at Yale University, is setting out to chronicle how and why agriculture production has changed in Canada as farmers work to meet the demands of an increasing global population. As Varty travels across the country, driving a Massey Ferguson 1660 compact tractor, he will explore a variety of agriculture-related subjects, from the enduring family farm to the new generation of farmers to food production and land-use changes. The trip will be filmed, and the footage used to produce a documentary. Varty will depart June 30 from Atlantic Tractors and Equipment Ltd., the Massey Ferguson dealership in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada.

“There have been a fair number of books and documentaries released in recent years that explore how food is produced,” explains Varty. “There are two poles of thought that much of this literature would have us believe. The first is the idea that our food is right on the edge of becoming nonexistent via corporate involvement. And, on the other end of that scale there seems to be this type of white-knight story, where someone is supposed to ride in and save us all. The truth of the matter is that the majority of farmers in Canada are still working out of a family unit, and I want to talk with these farmers to learn more about the challenges they face each day.”

Massey Ferguson, which is sponsoring the tractor ride, has a deep connection to Canadian agriculture, dating back more than 150 years. In 1847, Daniel Massey opened a small workshop to build farm implements in Newcastle, Ontario. Ever since then, Massey Ferguson has been a pioneer in the agriculture equipment industry, developing innovative equipment that farmers count on to help overcome the obstacles and challenges they encounter in the field. And, although a lot has changed in agriculture since 1847, one thing hasn’t: the tremendous pride the Massey Ferguson brand has in its Canadian heritage.

“What Dr. Varty is undertaking is truly a unique project in every sense of the word. Given our Canadian history, it made perfect sense to get involved with this effort,” says Rajesh Joshi, director of marketing at Massey Ferguson. “It’s not every day you hear about an individual who wants to hit the road to connect with farmers to better understand who they are, what they do and how they work. It’s just as much our responsibility as it is anyone else’s in agriculture to help consumers understand how and why the industry has evolved.”

During the tractor ride, Varty will visit more than 20 Massey Ferguson dealerships throughout Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec and Ontario.

As Varty travels from town to town, he will make additional stops that coincide with local events, such as art festivals, music festivals, theater festivals and sporting events, among others. At each stop, farmers, food company officials, government representatives, community leaders and university professors will be invited to share their respective thoughts and ideas as they relate to food and food production in Canada.

“Our travels will include a hay wagon featuring a small cabin that replicates a 1950s’-style bungalow to provide us shelter and sleeping quarters,” says Varty. “I’ll conduct the majority of my interviews with people in a seating area on the wagon. While we’re going to invite people on board to share their thoughts and ideas, I also envision some creative uses for the wagon as well, such as inviting a local band to use it as a grandstand. I really don’t know what to expect until we depart from Charlottetown. That’s when all of the experiences, interviews and personal stories we’ll use in the documentary will truly begin.”

Additional amenities on the hay wagon include a freshwater tank and solar-generated electricity for lighting and laptop usage.
Varty’s interest in Canadian agricultural history extends beyond the classroom. He has numerous family members who have carried on the family’s five-generation farm in east-central Ontario. The tractor ride will wind through the back roads of Canada, reaching Leamington, Ontario, Canada, by the end of August.

Do you live in Canada? Are you interested in seeing Dr. Varty during his trip? Visit the website to see a full map of Dr. Varty’s stops, and plan your trip to visit Dr. Varty and the Massey Ferguson tractor.

AGCO Farm Legacy Photo Contest Winner

After sorting through many touching entries and even shedding a few tears thinking about our own farming legacies who have passed away, we are happy to announce that Brian T. of Port Hope, Ontario, Canada is the winner of AGCO’s Farm Legacy Photo Contest. We launched this contest to give people the chance to honor their farming influences. We asked them to tell us things like what they learned on the farm and who taught it to them. Although the contest was centered around Father’s Day in the US, we welcomed entries about all kinds of farm heros from fathers to mothers to aunts and granddads.  Here is Brian’s beautiful story about his grandfather. Congratulations to Brian and his farming legacy!

AGCO Photo Contest Winner

“This is a photo of my grandfather showing a newborn calf to my mom and aunt. My grandfather was a farmer from the day he was born to the day he died. He loved the land, loved animals and loved people. He instilled in me all of his beliefs and knowledge. He is the reason I’m interested in farming.”

What are some things that you learned on the farm?

Großer Valtra Fotowettbewerb mit vielen Preisen

Valtra Deutschland lädt Sie ein beim Valtra Fotowettbewerb 2011 teilzunehmen. Werden Sie Valtra Fotograf des Jahres 2011!

Sie haben “DAS Valtra-Bild” 2011 geschossen und möchten dieses mit uns teilen? Ihr Foto zeigt Valtra Traktoren in witzigem, außergewöhnlichem oder besonders eindrucksvollem Einsatz und Sie möchten attraktive Preise gewinnen?

Besuchen Sie uns auf unserer Homepage und schicken Sie uns Ihr Valtra-Bild 2011. Einsendeschluss ist der 31. Juli 2011.

Eine Auswahl der preisgekrönten Bilder wird sowohl auf unserer Homepage als auch in unserer Kundenzeitschrift Valtra Team veröffentlicht.

Wir freuen uns auf Ihre Einsendungen!

The Fendt 828 Vario is the “Tractor of the Year” in Switzerland

The readers of the agricultural trade magazines “Schweizer Bauer”, “Schweizer Landtechnik” and “Terre&Nature” have voted the Fendt 828 Vario “Tractor of the Year”.

The 260-hp tractor (Category 3, 126 hp and up) received nine percent of the votes, which was the best result. The 110-hp 312 Vario, also a tractor from Fendt, took second place. “We are very pleased with this result,” said Werner Müller, GVS Agrar AG Sales Manager for Fendt Tractors, at the awards ceremony in Schaffhausen. The fact that Fendt took both first and second place confirms the excellent image that the tractor brand has with farmers. There is also great interest in the 828 Vario in Switzerland. “Last year, the 828 was presented to the public for the first time, in September the tractor went into production in the Fendt works in Marktoberdorf, and in the spring the first models were already delivered to customers,” explains Müller.

Altogether 49 standard tractors in three horsepower categories, 8 mountain tractors, 13 yard loaders and 12 telescopic loaders were included in the competition for the Tractor of the Year, which took place shortly before the Agrama last November.

Do you have a Fendt 828 Vario?

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