Ag retailers play a critical role in Canadian agriculture production, and a retailer’s level of influence with farm managers will continue to evolve as technology becomes more integrated with farm operations.
As farms become more sophisticated, what has occurred is the convergence of crop science, equipment and technology. All three components play an equally important role in sustainable and profitable crop production, so it is critical that agronomic recommendations made by ag retail agronomists consider each farm customer’s technology and equipment capabilities.
It is critical to understand why and how farmers are embracing technologies and how ag retailers can align and integrate these adopted farm technologies into their business operations. Are we as ag retailers prepared to participate in, and capitalize on, these upcoming opportunities?
Over the past year, I have had many discussions with partner associations, academics, extension and ag retail agronomists. I saw a disconnect in the understanding of the relationship between farm equipment and technology as it relates to agronomy. There is also a disconnect regarding the next generation of graduating agronomists understanding the level of technology sophistication associated with modern farm equipment.
This past summer, a straw poll of four Canadian university four-year agriculture programs validated the disconnect, indicating an average of 50 per cent of graduates have little to no practical farm experience.
CAAR, in conjunction with sister associations, will lead and support the current and next generation of ag retailer agronomists to strengthen their understanding of:
- How the farm equipment and technology utilized impacts the performance of agronomic recommendations.
- How agronomic recommendations impact the performance and results of technology-managed farm equipment.
We will begin releasing our strategy to address these two agronomic challenges faced by ag retail agronomists at the 2019 CAAR Conference in Winnipeg from Feb. 12-14.
Looking ahead, I see farm customers consulting their ag retail agronomists when considering equipment and technology upgrades, asking: “Does the technology and equipment meet my agronomic goals and evolving practices?”
The final decision remains with the farm customer, but the ag retail agronomist can help them get there.
Executive Director, CAAR
- The Communicator's April 2020 Issue is now available The April 2020 issue of The Communicator magazine is arriving in print edition and online. This issue contains profile stories on each of the CAAR Choice Awards winners, who were honored for their achievements at the...
- In times of crisis, effective leaders become calmer. As business leaders of small to large ag corporations, what can we do to support employees and customers? The first time I heard this statement was in the fall of 2001. My office was located on the fourth floor of...
- Are You Receiving The Communicator Magazine? Have you moved to a new company or changed your address? Read more to make sure your information is up-to-date to receive The Communicator Magazine. For over 25 years The Communicator magazine has been telling the...
- CAAR 2020 and Beyond CAAR has completed year one of its long-term strategic plan, developed in fall 2018 to guide the association’s focus and direction. As we prepare to embark on the next phase of our long-term strategy, we also enter a...
- The December Communicator is Here The December Communicator is here – check your mailbox or read online at caar.org/the-communicator. The final issue of 2019 is packed with valuable information and expert insight to take your retail into the next dec...