I spent yesterday morning at a remarkable meeting of young farmers meshing tradition and technology to sustain healthy soils and produce bountiful crops in a changing economy and climate.
They had gathered for a “pre conference” ahead of the seventh Young Farmers Conference hosted by the Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture in the lower Hudson Valley the rest of this week. A recurring theme was that the best way to sustain America’s smaller farms, both organic and conventional, is through an intensified focus on technology.Read more
Will big data kill the small farm or save it?
An article in Monday’s New York Times profiles a farmer in Indiana, who is loaded with the latest information technology-rich agricultural gear. His sensors and large-scale data analysis, he told me, increases his return on investment by 50 percent, compared with conventional farming.Read more
Kip Tom, a seventh-generation family farmer, harvests the staples of modern agriculture: seed corn, feed corn, soybeans and data.
“I’m hooked on a drug of information and productivity,” he said, sitting in an office filled with computer screens and a whiteboard covered with schematics and plans for his farm’s computer network.Read more
Something strange is happening at farms in upstate New York. The cows are milking themselves.
Desperate for reliable labor and buoyed by soaring prices, dairy operations across the state are charging into a brave new world of udder care: robotic milkers, which feed and milk cow after cow without the help of a single farmhand.Read more