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Ag data conference to give farmers skills they can use

Experts will gather to determine how farms should build a data strategy.

Driven by the recent explosion in new farm-based data products and services, Penton Agriculture is launching an exciting new event focused on farmer data problems and solutions.

Our inaugural The Ag Data Conference, designed by the editors of industry-leading information brands Corn+Soybean Digest, Farm Futures and Farm Industry News, will take place Nov 29-30 at the Coralville Marriott Hotel & Convention Center near Iowa City, Iowa.

This event brings together some of the top voices in the fast-growing agricultural data sector to answer the question: How do I build a successful data strategy for my farm that improves my business, short and long term?

“Data has become a modern agricultural commodity, but turning data into dollars has been a slow evolution,” says Indiana farmer Matt Bechdol, interim executive director of the Agricultural Data Coalition, and a speaker at the conference. “Practical learning, sharing, and collaboration opportunities like the Ag Data Conference will better prepare growers to maximize the value of this new commodity in the era of data driven agriculture.”

All-star lineup

The meeting will include a stellar lineup of keynote speakers who will challenge grower thinking.

Here’s a sneak peek:

Kip Pendleton, President, Pendleton Group – Pendleton has been immersed in ag and innovation his entire career, with leadership roles spanning from seed genetics to first biotech commercialization, to cutting ag tech startup companies. He has worked as an independent consultant with a number of dealers, organizations, groups and large growers around the globe. His industry data perspective of “system of systems,” combined with a practical appreciation for farmer ROI, will challenge you to think through your strategies. 



Dan Frieberg, President, Premier Crop Systems and Data Decisions columnist for Corn+Soybean Digest – Frieberg will discuss how to turn specific field data into smart profitable decisions with ‘enhanced learning blocks.’

Freiberg has have helped hundreds of agronomic advisors and thousands of farmers since 1999 to ‘think deeper’ to identify and correct yield limiting factors in their fields – all based around sound data.




Scott Kirk-Ag-Data-conferenceScott Kirk, VP, Technology Crossover Ventures – Kirk will deliver the 30,000-feet perspective of how and why huge venture capital has flowed into agricultural technologies. He has a background steeped in Silicon Valley’s technology investment community, working with companies in the internet, software and business services sectors. His role at TCV (a $10 billion tech-focused growth equity firm in Palo Alto, Calif.) focuses on investments in the software and services ecosystems. Kirk recently embarked on a deep-dive into the agricultural technology space. He will provide you with a macro perspective on the value of technology for your business, why investors (and farmers) are excited about ag-tech and some parallel learnings from how other vertical markets are leveraging big data.


Craig Poling-Ag-data-conferenceCraig Poling, Chief Technology Officer, Sentek Systems – Poling will share how UAVs will optimize farming through data and analytics.  Poling has been ‘playing’ seriously with drones, sensor/camera/software technology and data since early military use days. His current passion is to turn multi-spectral imagery of fields and crops into valuable and profitable decisions. He will present exclusive new data on nitrogen management, and he’ll outline other specific values of how UAVs will optimize farming – another can’t-miss presentation.

Dr. Raj Khosla, Professor & Assistant Dean, Soil & Crop Sciences/Precision Ag department, Colorado State University –Khosla will unravel the science behind grid sampling and share how to optimize management zones and data layers for success. Khosla has spent more than 20 years deep in precision agriculture and data. His lab and researchers collaborate with public and private entities, doing on-farm trials for real results. His expertise is broad – from spacial soil variability and management zones to plant/soil sensors, water management and big data solutions.

John Fulton, Agricultural engineer, Ohio State University – Fulton is quickly becoming an authoritative voice on farm data. He will moderate panels on big data, data quality and best sharing and storing practices. His Ohio family farm background combined with his passionate research work on all things precision agriculture and big data continues to deliver solutions to increase farmer efficiency. His expertise will help farmers cut through the big data confusion to make better agronomic decisions.





On-farm solutions

Breakout sessions will do a deep dive on practical solutions and experiences from other farmers, so attendees can apply new ideas to their business immediately.

Numerous sessions will focus on farmer case studies. Attendees will learn best practices from peers, their advisors, consultants and technology providers. Not only will they gain insight, they will understand the thought process that led these farmers to adjust and adopt these practices, products and services. Farmers will share what works – what didn’t - and why. We are busy compiling the best speaker teams to address these key topics:

·         Best farm data collection strategies

·         Optimizing on- and off-farm data storage

·         Farm data ownership: contracts, sharing, services, aggregation

·         Best as-planted data layers: Capture beyond the monitor

·         Field scouting data layers

·         Why employ UAV technology in 2017

·         Working in the cloud: Pros, cons, services offered

·         Finding ROI: Best data layers, advanced agronomic field analysis

·         Finding that trusted data advisor

·         Best Plug ‘N Play system for young farmers

·         IoT: How to prepare your farm for the Internet of Things

“Top producers today face profit challenges that data can help solve,” says keynote speaker Kip Pendleton. “To use data they must figure out how to move successfully across a continuum from data points, to clean consolidated information, to be able to create knowledge that can result in profitable actions. To be successful they need to rely on a “System of Systems” (as described by Harvard University) to collect and manage data and a “Team of Teams” to support and execute results.

“Today no one has the complete answer, and this conference will highlight and allow growers to share and learn emerging best practices that will work on their farms,” he adds.

To register (early birds get $100 discount), go to

Plan to attend and gain valuable data skills you can apply to your farm business today. 

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