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Farmers and experts join together to discuss and solve common data problems.

July 6, 2016

5 Min Read

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

The inaugural Ag Data Conference — designed by the editors of industry-leading information brands Corn+Soybean Digest, Farm Futures and Farm Industry News — will be 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 ag data sector and will answer the question: How do I build a successful data strategy for my farm that improves my business, both 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 conference speaker. “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 at our speaker lineup:

Kip Pendleton — president, Pendleton Group — has been immersed in ag and innovation his entire career, with leadership roles spanning from seed genetics to first biotech commercialization to cutting-edge 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 — will discuss how to turn specific field data into smart profitable decisions with “enhanced learning blocks.”

Freiberg has helped hundreds of agronomic advisers 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 — vice president, Technology Crossover Ventures — will deliver the 30,000-foot perspective of how and why huge venture capital has flowed into ag technologies. He has a background steeped in Silicon Valley’s technology investment community, working with companies in the internet, software and business services sectors on a variety of strategic advisory assignments, financing and M&A transactions.

His role at TCV in Palo Alto, Calif., focuses on investments in the software and services ecosystems. His research into the agricultural technology space will provide you with perspective on the value of technology for your business.

Craig Poling — chief technology officer, Sentek Systems — will share how UAVs will optimize farming through data and analytics. Poling has been seriously “playing” with drones, sensors and software technology and data since their early military use. His passion is to turn multispectral imagery of fields and crops into valuable and profitable decisions. He will present exclusive new data on nitrogen management, and he’ll outline other values of how UAVs will optimize farming.

Raj Khosla — professor and assistant dean, soil and crop sciences, Colorado State University — will unravel the science behind grid sampling and how to optimize management zones and data layers for success. Khosla has spent more than 20 years in precision agriculture and data. His lab and researchers collaborate with public and private entities, doing on-farm trials. His expertise ranges from spacial soil variability and management zones to plant and soil sensors, water management and big data solutions.

John Fulton — agricultural engineer, Ohio State University — 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 background in Ohio farming combined with his research work on all things precision agriculture and big data continues to deliver solutions to increase efficiency. His expertise will help farmers cut through the big data confusion to make better agronomic decisions.

Breakout sessions. -- >>>


Join us for the first-ever Ag Data conference

Real-world experiences

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.

Several sessions will focus on farmer case studies. Attendees will learn best practices from peers, their advisers, consultants and technology providers. They will not only gain insight, but also 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. Speaker teams will address these key topics:

-farm data collection strategies

-optimization of on- and off-farm data storage

-farm data ownership — contracts, sharing, services, aggregation

-best as-planted data layers

-field-scouting data layers

-UAV technology in 2017

-working in the cloud

-finding ROI

-finding trusted data advisers

-best plug-’n’-play system

-preparation for the Internet of Things

“Top producers today face profit challenges that data can help solve,” says Kip Pendleton, keynote speaker. “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. This conference will highlight and allow growers to share and learn emerging best practices that will work on their farms,” he adds.

To register, view agenda and book your hotel, go online to Plan to attend and gain valuable data skills you can apply to your farm business today.

Lawton is editor of Corn & Soybean Digest.

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