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Web site numbers grow as agribusiness companies provide updates, information

EDITOR'S NOTE — Agribusiness companies are embracing World Wide Web technology to establish or update Internet Web sites which provide information pertaining to a firm's products and services. While it would be next to impossible to list all ag-related Web sites, the editors at Farm Press will periodically provide a general description of updates or new sites coming online to give our readers an idea of what might be found at a given location. Examples follow. — The BASF Vegetation Management Group has launched its content-rich Web site for pasture and rangeland managers. The site provides farmers, ranchers and government personnel with current information on maintaining high-quality bermudagrass pastures and hay meadows in the South and controlling noxious and invasive weeds in western pastures and rangelands.

The site provides viewers with information on ways to grow purer stands of bermudagrass pastures and hay meadows as effective control methods for the management of invasive and noxious weeds.

In another development, BASF has also announced it has selected Spacenet Inc., the U.S. subsidiary of Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd., to provide high-speed, satellite-based Internet service and broadband networking solutions for up to 3,000 agricultural distributor and retail customers nationwide.

The new service, to be called Harvest Partners Network, is based on Gilat's 360E VSAT platform. The service will bring high-speed Internet access to rural-based retailers, which until now have had limited access to broadband connectivity.

Later this summer, participating retailers will be able to offer Harvest Partners Network to their grower customers as well. They will be able to provide customers with value-added information such as scouting reports and pest advisories, allowing them to build stronger customer relationships.

In addition to high speed Internet access, Harvest Partners Network subscribers will also have nearly immediate access to in-depth market, weather, news and agronomy information. — Growers have a new way to discover the difference between Roundup UltraMAX herbicide and certain imitator products that claim to be “just like Roundup.” The Difference will unfold live on the Internet at this site.

“Thousands of growers watched weeds wither last year on our weedcam. In fact, it was so effective at showing the weed control advantage of RounduP UltraMAX over imitator products that we set up RoundupCam as the sequel,” says Monsanto's Bryan Kliewer, Roundup marketing manager.

Every 15 minutes, the site will update the live display of a side-by-side Monsanto greenhouse trial comparing cotton plants sprayed with Roundup UltraMAX and plants sprayed with CPT's product.

In addition to the live side-by-side trials, the RoundupCam site houses a summary of past research, including university and grower trials that have found certain imitator products to have poor weed control performance or cause crop injury on Roundup Ready soybeans, corn and cotton. — Rain Bird Corporation, the leading manufacturer of irrigation equipment, has announced the launch of an enhanced Web site enabling user-friendly online access to quality solutions for all types of irrigation applications.

Easy to use by all audiences, the new Web site will provide irrigation professionals and homeowners alike with immediate access to detailed product specifications, replacement parts and instruction manuals. In addition, visitors will have access to troubleshooting guides, tips on efficient irrigation, a dealer locator, an online store, a custom design service, and answers to the most frequently asked questions regarding irrigation. — The popular booklet, “How to Computerize Your Farm Records” is now available for free download on the Internet at this site.

“How to Computerize Your Farm Records”, not only tells the reader how to go about the search for the right software, but it also gives recommendations for choosing the right computer.

There are guidelines and checklists to help the first-time computer user (or the user looking to upgrade a system) choose the hardware and software that best fits his farm's needs.

This booklet simplifies the complicated, time-consuming process of evaluating software and choosing the right computer.

The publisher, Red Wing Business Systems, Inc., is a full service supplier of software to the agricultural industry. — New livestock marketer, Stampede Cattle Company is ready to drive the market with its personalized, grassroots approach to online cattle trading. The privately held company, based in Visalia, Calif., offers daily trading of stockers, feeders and breeding stock, and is supported by a network of more than 60 regional managers and field agents.

Since the launch of its online service in early March, Stampede's cattle listings have climbed to 4,500 head per week. Stampede provides an easy-to-navigate Web site with a real-time, bid and ask format. Cattle are listed 24-hours a day, seven days a week with trading hours from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Pacific Standard Time, Monday through Friday.

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