Data Science for More Effective Farm Inputs
Sound Agriculture’s SOURCE product helps to stimulate beneficial microbes for greater nutrient use efficiency. But with anything biological says CEO Adam Litle, there are going to be a number of factors that impact how effective the product is in a given field.
Litle… “If you think about pesticide or herbicide, you're only getting efficacy out of those products sometimes 50 or 60% of the time. Yet because in aggregate they work and they give you a positive return, we apply them. With biologicals and our product as well, there are similar factors going to impact it. So for us, pH is a factor. Organic matter is a factor. Something called CEC, which is cation exchange capacity in the soil is a factor. How much nitrogen you put on is a factor.”
Litle says he sees tremendous opportunity to improve the efficacy of inputs with data science.
Litle… “There's so much potential here, and ag hasn't really embraced data science and analytics and predictive analytics to say where exactly to place stuff and when. And as we and other companies work on that and merge inputs and data science, you're going to increase the hit rate of these products from 50 - 60%, which is what some have seen to what we see, which is 70 - 80% to like 90% plus. And that's how you overcome that reputation.”
This information could allow farmers to use a greater diversity of products that are optimized to the conditions of each area of the farm.