Growers get first look at new technology - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Growers get first look at new technology

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July 15, 2003

Moultrie- Hundreds of farmers took the day off from their own fields and head to the Ag Expo field day. There they got a first-hand look at the latest and greatest products on the market.

"The farmers can come out and have a one-on-one situation with the different chemical companies and seed companies, and University people as well," say Farm Manager, Darrell Williams.

Besides talking to exhibitors, growers got to see their products and chemicals at work, including several systems that could save one of the states most sought after resources -water.

"For the farmer the biggest benefit to me is it gives you a real idea of what you're using, not somebody in some office telling you that you're using this amount you know how much water you are using. To protect your right to use water you need to know how much you're using," explains Soil and Water Conservation Commission Representative, Antonio Fleming.

One of the newest and probably most expensive systems is one that uses satellite technology. Trimble is just one of the companies offering GPS self-steering systems for tractors.

"For an operational perspective it's probably not that much different. The only difference is we can continue to do it even after it gets dark. Probably one of the biggest advantages is being able to utilize the tractor more hours during the day. Twenty-four hours a day if you want," says Trimble Consultant, Levi Kettle.

"I'm an old farmer and it's something. I have at one time gotten on the tail end of a plow of mules, so it's quite an experience to see it go from mules to a tractor that drives itself," adds Williams.

The price tag for one system, $12,000 to $50,000. Proof it costs to be on the cutting edge of technology.

The field day is just a sample of some the technology growers will experience at the 2003 Sunbelt Ag Expo in October.

Posted at 5:35 PM by elaine.armstrong@walb.com