- Tyler O'Neal
Agriculture Data Shifts from Farm to Field-Level, Helping Growers Make Decisions in Real-Time
Farmers Edge has announced a collaboration with The Weather Company, an IBM Business, the world's largest private weather enterprise. Under the terms of the deal, Farmers Edge has integrated hyper-local forecasts from Weather’s superior Forecasts on Demand (FoD) weather forecasting engine into its field-centric approach to predictive modeling. This enhancement of real-time meteorological data analytics is another step towards the digitization of agriculture, an industry in the midst of a radical transformation.
Established growing regions have traditionally relied on static climate data sets collected by an existing fleet of government, city or airport weather stations. Now, with a global network of distributed weather stations in the field, Farmers Edge is providing real-time data from the field that can enable highly precise, predictive models that inform growers’ decision-making on: critical crop stages, the timing of field operations, pest and disease pressure, equipment deployment, soil needs and nutrient requirements. Through this collaboration, Farmers Edge continues to marry data science with agricultural science to provide the most accurate field-centric data in the industry.
“Through our work with Farmers Edge, we hope to help the agriculture industry leverage precise weather data in order to optimize critical decisions,” said Mark Gildersleeve, President, Business Solutions, The Weather Company, an IBM Business. “Weather is the single biggest variable in business performance, and this deal brings together some of the most advanced weather forecasting science in the industry and a leader in ag-data to create a one-of-a-kind platform to support decision-making to improve yields for growers around the world.”
Farmers Edge has established itself as an industry leader in deploying weather stations on farms. By Spring 2016, the company expects to have the largest real-time weather-monitoring network in Canada with over 1,000 automated field-centric weather stations and will be targeting similar deployment in other substantive agriculture markets. The enhanced weather offerings underscored by this collaboration are a part of the larger vision of Farmers Edge to bring cutting edge technologies to growers worldwide.
Through a field-centric technology approach, Farmers Edge enables more productive and sustainable farming, ultimately increasing crop yields. The Farmers Edge Precision Solutions package is a comprehensive turnkey system that includes: Variable Rate Technology, soil sampling and analysis, field-centric weather monitoring, in-field telematics and data transfer, high-resolution satellite imagery, field-centric data analytics, access to an integrated farm management platform and a network of highly experienced, trusted advisors on the ground.
“Though weather is a key factor in the decision-making of today’s farmers, growers have not had access to high-quality weather data that can enable more informed management and facilitate better growing, particularly in data-sparse environments,” said Wade Barnes, President and CEO of Farmers Edge. “We’ve created a scalable solution that works for our global network of growers and one that can be tailored to support the needs of individual fields, from grain production in Brazil to variant weather in Australia. Predictive forecasting models are the next step towards achieving higher global crop yields, sustainably.”