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Precision Planting Winter Conference 2022

Precision Planting Winter Conference 2022

Precision Planting Winter Conference 2022 has come and gone, and the event brought exciting news, learning opportunities, and new connections to farmers across the country. The closest location for our local farmers to attend the conference was held in Tremont, IL. Winter Conference 2022 concluded on January 21st. Precision Planting Regional Manager, Eric Huber, worked with me to help bring you an in-depth recap of what the conference had to offer this year.

Winter Conference means more to the Precision Planting team than just showcasing their new products. Huber explained that while one of their goals for the conference is to showcase new products, it is more important to them to show growers where Precision Planting is going and where they believe there is opportunity for return on investment for growers. “That’s what really gets us excited at the end of the day,” Huber stated. At the Tremont location, they rotated 3 groups of 80 attendees per day through 4 different sessions. Huber said that many great conversations took place.

Winter Conference 2021 was unable to be in person due to COVID protocols. This year, Precision Planting was thankful to be able to have the event in person, but they did see about 30-40% less people than they normally would for in-person attendance. Huber explained, “We were down in attendance for sure, we could feel some of the pressure of COVID and some folks being a little bit more timid on getting out. It was good to have people back in person.” When asked how he thought Winter Conference went overall, Huber said, “It was good, all things considered. We were very blessed.”

Precision Planting announced their entrance into the sprayer market during this year’s event. The sprayer market is one that the company has never been in before, and they are going into it with the well-known “Precision Planting style”. They are entering the sprayer market with innovation. Huber further describes the “Precision Planting style”, “There are a number of products that already exist in some way, shape, or form in the market that we are coming with. But, it’s going to be the new ‘flavor’ that we add that is going to drive differentiation.”

The first product that they announced is called Reclaim. Normally, a sprayer has to run some of the product (that will be sprayed) onto the ground while it mixes the different “ingredients” that are being sprayed. The product gets sent to the boom (which is where the product comes out of) but the boom has to have the ready to spray product. With Reclaim, no product gets wasted onto the ground. This saves about 60-65 gallons of product from being wasted. Huber explains Reclaim, “We are going to put a circulation system into that sprayer that allows us to take product from the end of the boom and bring it back to the tank and just circulate it through that system. You turn on a switch that begins to circulate it through the machine without dumping anything onto the ground. Once they turn the Reclaim system off, they will immediately have an active product without having to waste anything.”

The next sprayer product they announced was Symphony. Symphony is a nozzle control system that will go at the point of every single nozzle on a sprayer. Huber explained that this is important because during spray application it is very important to maintain the same pressure in the boom because the boom is what determines the size of the droplets that go on the ground. Symphony was created because currently the system can be inaccurate due to changes in speed of the machine. The idea of Symphony isn’t new to the market, but Precision Planting is making it unique by creating Vision Technology. 

Vision Technology is a very exciting project in the works. Huber discussed, “We have a group of engineers that are working on using cameras mounted on the sprayer and they will being to train the cameras to understand the difference between a weed that is a broad leaf, a grass type weed, and a corn plant.” Once the cameras can identify the weed, it can accurately spray just where it needs to. The Vision Technology also will work to scout how the corn plants are doing, which can be a painstaking process by hand, but it is critical because you learn so much valuable information from scouting. “So imagine scouting every acre of every field while spraying, while generating a weed map all at the same time. This is some phenomenal technology that will really be unique in the industry,” Huber exclaimed.

If you are interested in learning more from Winter Conference, session videos can be found by visiting Precision Planting on YouTube or through their website

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