January 2011 Archives
Now that the Ag Days farm show in Brandon, MB. is wrapping up, another important event will soon begin in that city. The Manitoba-North Dakota Zero Tillage Workshop is set to start. Getting a chance to sit down and discuss leading edge production research at events like this one could be the best investment of time and energy grain growers could make.
Success in farming today depends on learning about and implementing every potential production advantage, even the small ones. Workshops like this one make that possible. To let you know just what this event has to offer, I'll let you read the press release that came from the organizers; it's below. Maybe I'll see you there.
“The North Dakota Zero Tillage Farmers Association will hold its 33rd Annual Zero Till Workshop and Trade Show at the Keystone Centre in Brandon, Manitoba, on Feb. 1 – 3, 2011.
Workshop presenters and farmer panels will discuss recent research and farm-based information relating to topics such as soil quality, crop rotations, field equipment and evolving zero-till practices.
The event will also unveil the Association’s third production manual, Beyond the Beginning: Zero-Till Evolution. The content of the new manual is shaped by both farmers and researchers discussing today’s growing need – and evolving tools – for shaping a site-specific, biological systems approach to zero-till.
“Zero-till has evolved into something more than a moisture-saving and erosion-control practice,” says Ted Alme, North Dakota’s state agronomist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service. “It has transformed into a dynamic, biological systems approach to resource management.”
Zero-till’s ongoing evolution into a biological system presents a need for new knowledge. The challenges lie in learning to let natural synergies work and in finding ways to mimic Mother Nature’s rhythms for the prairie.
“We need to increase our knowledge and our management skills,” says Jeff Thiele, soil resource specialist, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Agri-Environment Services Branch, Dauphin, Manitoba. “We don’t understand, for instance, all the interactions in different plant communities with insects and the organisms in the soil. We must learn to work with synergies between crops. We can learn to work with Mother Nature – learn to work with what we have.”
For additional information about the Brandon workshop and the production manual, visit www.mandakzerotill.org.”
One of North America's newest farm machinery shows opened its doors on Friday in Atlanta, Georgia. The 2011 AG Connect Expo, the second to be held, was paired with the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) convention at the Georgia World Congress Center. Members of ASABE are the ones who design the farm machines that appear at shows like AG Connect.
AG Connect is a little different than most of the other big shows in the U.S. and Canada, though. While there are still many machines on display, the number is considerably lower than at most other events. But the number of senior company executives on hand to discuss nearly any topic related to their shiny new equipment or the farm machinery industry itself is unprecedented. For a farm journalist, that's a rare treat.
The show also focuses on education and an exchange of ideas among producers and others in the ag. business. So there is a heavy schedule of discussion panels.
Held in downtown Atlanta this year—and Orlando, Florida, last year—organizers expected its southern locale would also make AG Connect a destination event for farmers and others in the industry. After this week's show wraps up, it will begin its bi-annual cycle. The next one is scheduled for January, 2013, back in Orlando.
DLG, the German agricultural society that administers Agritechnica, probably the world's foremost machinery event, is a co-sponsor of AG Connect, which is part of the reason it is scheduled to run in the period between the bi-annual Agritechnica shows. The next Agritechnica is in November.
Keep an eye out for some of the highlights from this week's AG Connect in upcoming issues of Grainews. One of which takes a look at the redesigned 820 Series of Fendt tractors AGCO is launching in North America. And as for what those executives had to say about the business end of the industry, keep an eye on future issues of Grainews' sister publication Country Guide for the lowdown.
For now, I better pack up my computer and get to the Atlanta airport. A major winter storm is about to swoop down on this city along with most of the southeastern U.S., and it's expected to shut down air traffic. So I better get while the getting is good. It's a good thing the 2013 show will be held even farther south. It seems to be getting harder to keep away from snow storms.