Farm Progress

Big-name players join FarmLink advisory board

jwehrspann, Senior Editor

January 29, 2016

2 Min Read
<p>FarmLinks&rsquo; benchmarking tool called TrueHarvest identifies the crop yield potential of individual fields across the Midwest, information which farmers can use to fine-tune management practices. </p>

Just two weeks after releasing its benchmark report on missed crop revenue opportunities, data analytics company FarmLink announced the creation of its advisory board. Joining the board are some big name players.

Those seated at the table:   

•        Julie Borlaug, associate director, Norman E. Borlaug Institute for International Agriculture, Texas A&M University

•        Howard W. Buffett, lecturer, Columbia University, co-author of 40 Chances: Finding Hope in a Hungry World, and Nebraska farmer

•        Rikin Gandhi, founder and CEO, Digital Green

•        Dan Glickman, vice president, Aspen Institute, and former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture

This high-profile casts sees technology as a way to make farming more productive, profitable and sustainable around the world. FarmLink’s data services will no doubt be a piece of the puzzle.

FarmLink has a yield benchmarking service called “TrueHarvest” that calculates the yield potential of fields across the Midwest. The calculation factors in 50 different environmental variables such as soil type, slope, elevation and growing conditions including precipitation and growing degree days, and comes up with a number that reflects the crop revenue potential of that field down to an area of 150 sq. ft.

Farmers can use that number to identify yield improvement opportunities and objectively validate their input and management decisions in such a way that optimizes production, profitability and sustainability. (Read our report of how FarmLink's benchmark is calculated here.)

“FarmLink is at the very forefront of innovation in agriculture, with a real commitment to sustainability in ways that are critical to our future,” said Buffett in a news release FarmLink issued this week. “It is an honor to join this distinguished group of advisors in support of such a mission.”

FarmLink says that the knowledge, experience and passion of its advisors will help them to create new innovative tools to improve farming.

While the company’s initial offerings benefit U.S. farmers, the technology has applicability to farm operations worldwide. "FarmLink connects the dots to build technology that magnifies human intent and capability. These ag tech platforms can inspire the next generation of agricultural innovators to make meaningful changes in global agriculture at the farm level," said Gandhi.

Borlaug had this to say about the new partnership:

“My grandfather strongly believed that science and technological breakthroughs in agriculture played the key role in improving the quantity, quality and availability of the food for the world’s people during the past 50 years,” Borlaug said. “But it will take the unconventional ideas and innovation of small start-ups, like FarmLink, to ensure our food security in the next 50 years.”

Farm Industry News recently interviewed Bob McClure, chief data scientist for FarmLink, for the story, “2015 crop benchmark analysis shows missed revenue.”  

You can find out more about the broader topic of benchmarking in our story “Benchmarking your farm gets easier,” by Farm Industry News editor Willie Vogt.  


About the Author(s)


Senior Editor, Farm Industry News

Jodie has been a journalist for 15 years, specializing in machinery, technology and precision farming. Prior to Farm Industry News, she worked as a research analyst/editor for Rockwood Research, the former research arm of Farm Journal Media.

Jodie has won numerous writing awards including the Master Writer Program Award, Level IV, from the American Agricultural Editor's Association (AAEA). She has also been recognized for her technical writing skills by the American Society of Business Publication Editors and the Minnesota Magazines and Publications Association. Jodie is an active member of AAEA and currently serves on the board.

A former native of Montevideo, MN, Jodie earned a B.A. degree from the University of Minnesota and a Masters degree in Business Communications from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN.

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