Model Orchard Shows Latest in Nutrition Management
Almond growers now have a way to see how new nutrition programs perform on a commercial scale orchard. YARA International has an incubator farm in Modesto. Here’s permanent crops manager Devin Clarke.
Clarke… “This was something that was launched not two years ago now, as a new part of our approach to really better understand how our recommendations and our understanding of crop nutrition management can be refined with the support of collaborators. And working with industry members and advisors and growers, to be able to further refine those over time.”
Clarke says they are not just looking at performance on the commercial scale orchard that they rent from a local grower. YARA is also looking at the economics of the program to communicate the return on investment to growers.
Clarke… “If we don't have the economic component in there, it really does not do justice to the practices that we're implementing. And so we are reporting on our ROI, year in and year out, as far as net returns to the grower. And so what we were able to find within the course of the first full season that we were there, is that after we paid for the premium program, or the premium management practices that we prescribed, we were able to produce an extra $750 an acre back to the grower.”
This is one way that companies like YARA are helping growers to reduce the risk of trying new products.