Husted visits Minster agribusiness


By Luke Gronneberg

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MINSTER – Lt. Gov. Jon Husted spent Tuesday, Feb. 13, touring agricultural businesses in the region and made a stop to Precision Agri Services in Minster.

“It’s really understanding the science of agriculture and how technology is improving our ability to get more productivity, which means lower prices for food at your table, but also focusing on smart agricultural techniques that will lead to higher water quality, less waste, more sustainable agriculture,” Husted said of the tours.

Precision Agri Services sells Horsch seeder machines and retrofits a variety of old seeder machines with newer attachments. They also fix seeder machines in their shop or can come out to a farm field if needed.

“This equipment we looked at today … is helping farmers be more productive and more environmentally friendly,” Husted said.

Husted also learned about how soil testing and monitoring can tell how much of a nutrient needs to be applied to each part of a field so that farmers don’t over apply things like nitrogen phosphorus or other nutrients that can drain off into lakes and rivers.

The technology available to farmers today is extensive. One of these technologies is the Row by Row Hydraulic Down Force Control system. According to Precision’s website, this system “adjusts pressure instantaneously based on field topography and soil conditions.” In the past when farmers had to plant all seeds at the same depth, they lost productivity when planting in a part of a field that may have less topsoil.

Besides giving farmers tools, Precision Agri Services and other similar companies can gather extensive data on a customer’s field such as topography, soil composition, drainage flow and other bits of information. The detailed information is broken down into a more easily accessible form for farmers.

Ohio Department of Agriculture Director Brian Baldridge was also on the tour and talked about how he recently got a glimpse of “the future of farming,” at the Farm Progress Show in Illinois.

At the show, Baldridge said he heard about how much technology had improved in the last 20 years, but that there will be twice as much new technology in the next 10. He listened to how scientists are working on getting nutrients to break down once they get into the waterways.

Other fields of research include developing man-made filtering systems capturing water that’s in movement.

“Were having a lot of discussions what is that next piece of the puzzle that helps the overall water quality issues in Ohio,” Baldridge said of the future.

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