Across the nation, nearly 96 percent of U.S. farms are family-owned and operated. For these families, farming is their sustenance—they depend on it for food, shelter, and a living income. Virginia Bezner, daughter of 3B Farms’ owners Lanny and Rita, explains it best, “This land means home. This is my home”.
Building Efficiencies Around the Challenges of Farming
“We have to become more efficient in everything that we do to ensure good profitability. That means growing more bushels with less money, which is crop input. That’s the big name of the game, it’s efficiency.”
Our nation’s farmers face a number of obstacles throughout the year, ranging from droughts and wildfires to hurricanes and flooding. Withstanding the volatility of farming demands smarter and more efficient use of the land. Over the last 50 years, the Bezner family has responded to these challenges by making changes in the ways that they farm their land. Precision technology has been an invaluable tool, something that they continue to invest in—that is however, after they’ve taken time to calculate the equipment’s ROI and capacity to service the land.
The Production and Operational Benefits of Precision Agriculture
Mark believes that digital farming is the key to success. Within their operation, the Bezner family uses several different tools to measure performance and to monitor the health of crops. According to Mark, precision ag tools have led to higher yields and reduced production costs.
“Precision ag tools that we just recently have started to use, have improved our ability to plant and transplant watermelons. It greatly impacted our population accuracy. Because of some of the new precision agriculture tools, I’ve been able to use an alternative fertilizer for corn. I was able to shift some of my fertilizer applications from in season or pre-season and put them on the corn planter, which has improved yield, and it’s also improved my efficiency as far as operating costs,” said Mark.
How Ag Tech Has Impacted the Way They Farm
Today, he and his brother Brian, rely on nearly 6-7 apps to provide the valuable insight on the performance of their crops and potential yields. It has also allowed them to spend more time focusing on areas of the farmer where sophisticated technology has not yet been adapted or still requires manual labor.
For Mark, precision ag is the path that will help 3B Farms continue to grow and support his family’s legacy well into the succeeding generations.
“My family is here on our acreage trying to sustain our business and provide for our families for a number of generations.”