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Evaluating farm technology

Sean Arians speaks at this year's IL Soy Advisor Soybean Summit in Springfield / CIFN photo.

Implementing technology into a farming operation is crucial these days, but the options must be evaluated carefully.

There are some great solutions out there for farmers says Sean Arians, founder of GrainCoat. Various ag technology options help with the equipment, business and agronomic side of an operation.

“Are we innovators or are we laggards and want to make sure that technology has been through all the bumps and bruises before we adopt it?” Arians asked during the IL Soy Advisor Soybean Summit held earlier this year.

We are in an era with much interest in agriculture simply because of the many practices farmers use every day.

“There’s plenty of room for technology in this space so I think that’s why it has had a big influx of interest, Arians said. “I certainly think that will continue in the next couple of years.”

Arians got his start in ag tech by selling auto-steer systems when they were new. He admits it was difficult to understand the value at first but as farmers started adopting it, they realized the value of being more efficient and able to work longer hours.

“Now that they’ve used it, they are believers.”

GrainCoat was born out of a frustration – as is the case with many companies.

“I was struggling to find a solution as a small farmer myself,” Arians said.

This new platform, launched last fall, allows growers to ditch the spreadsheet and sell and make offers to their local elevator. Users know where they are at on sold or unsold bushels for multiple years without much data entry. GrainCoat focuses on projecting bushels based on a crop plan users enter once and they verify twice a year.

“I can make offers through the system and keep track of those contracts. When an elevator fills it, it updates my account in GrainCoat.”

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