By LON TONNESON
Steve Scherr is excited to be offering ProfiZone in the Dakotas.Scherr is a farmer, cattle producer and president of AgVenture/Scherr Seeds, Roscoe, S.D. ProfiZone is a precision farming consulting service developed by AgVenture, an independent seed dealer network that Scherr Seeds is part of.
AgVenture began testing ProfiZone four years ago in various locations across the Corn Belt. More than 100,000 acres were managed with the system during the pilot period. “Every grower who started ProfiZone stayed with the program without a single exception,” says Robert Corzatt, ProfiZone lead agronomist.
• ProfiZone is a precision farming, variable-rate consulting service.
• Test plots, called “Learning Blocks,” are built into each management zone.
• Goal is for ProfiZone to up yields 20% more than your benchline.
The variable-rate test plots that ProfiZone specialists write into each management zone in a field are big selling point for the program. AgVenture calls them “Learning Blocks.”
“Learning Blocks are an opportunity for discovery. They allow growers to assess a segment of cropland and its performance right there on your farm, within a field and/or throughout a field or farm.
It is on-farm research that growers can measure and prove what works and what doesn’t,” says Bryan Scherr, who manages ProfiZone at AgVenture/Scherr Seed.
“Data collected becomes important information to a grower’s management scheme when they have proof of their practices in black and white in front of them. Over time, they have the opportunity to adjust and advance management practices to bring more yield and more profit per acre.”
The goal is for ProfiZone users to increase the yield average 20% over baseline increases in their area.
Bryan Scherr answered the following questions about ProfiZone:
Q: Why is there a need for ProfiZone?
Today’s input costs for farming are high. ProfiZone better manages these costs by properly placing the seed and fertility requirements where they are most needed. Today’s machinery is very capable of doing just that. Farmers want to make the most out of their land, and with today’s machinery and technology, ProfiZone can easily achieve just that!
Q: How did ProfiZone work for your customers this year?
ProfiZone is an intense learning program. It takes at least two years of yield data to look for trends and critique it for the following year. What was said and seen by farmers who were enrolled in the program this year was “we saved money on fertilizer costs by placing it in the proper areas where it counted” and “the plant stand was so even and uniform it looked beautiful.”
So, yes, it did work, but it is a learning program that takes time and will increase your yields and most definitely give you your return on the investment.
Q: Why do you think ProfiZone is a superior precision farming/consulting program?
ProfiZone places Learning Blocks within each management zone for fertility and plant population. At the end of the year, the crop is harvested, and ProfiZone can analyze the data within each Learning Block and its surrounding cells and validate the learning process.
Soil sampling is also very intense by sampling every 4.4 acres with about 12 probes of soil within 15 feet of the point that make up one sample for that individual point. The soil sampling is also GPS based, so when we come back to soil sample in the future we come back to that exact point. With these aspects and the technology of ProfiZone, we feel we have a superior farming program.
Q: What’s new for 2013?
What will be new is next year’s fertilizer and plant population prescriptions. Every year we learn more about the soil and the farmers’ land to earn them their maximum profit and boost yields.
For more information, contact AgVenture/Scherr Seed at 605-287-4170, or see www.scherrseed.com.
where to begin? Steve Scherr, president of AgVenture/Scherr Seeds and a farmer and cattle producer, offers a service to help farmers get started using variable-rate fertilizing and seeding technology.
This article published in the January, 2013 edition of DAKOTA FARMER.
All rights reserved. Copyright Farm Progress Cos. 2013.