Efficiency Through Farm Data
Part of an ongoing series discussing the value of data-led decision making, this article will focus on how data can drive efficiency across a farming operation.
The surest way to operate efficiently in today’s challenging climate, when being squeezed by both input and output volatility, is to listen and respond to your farm data.
Historical Analysis (YAGRO Analytics)
Historical data is a treasure trove of insights. It's your year-on-year record and holds the key to optimising your farm's performance.
When cleaned, verified and structured by YAGRO Analytics, historical farm data can offer broad insights that can guide efficient practices.
You can see which areas of your operation to adjust according to market medians and use lessons from the past to pivot for the future. Understanding historical data highlights opportunities for increased efficiency.
We had a conversation with James Jay Wrighton, Head Farm Manager at Fridays Ltd, and his view was “it’s all about building blocks of data, and there’s a lot of value in it.”
Real-Time Data (YAGRO Tracker)
Historical data is invaluable for providing context. But when you’re in the midst of the farming season, real-time data is another tool in your belt.
Through YAGRO Tracker, you can monitor your season as it progresses; keeping an eye on costs, inputs, and budgets to ensure your trajectory corresponds with your goals. This is an empowering tool which ensures an efficient operation by informing decisions in real-time.
This includes having an accurate view of crop progress and sunk costs, keeping you on track for a healthy margin come harvest.
Use accurate real-time data to continually support your decisions and ensure the season never gets away from you.
Field-level data should be used for assessing each field's productivity. It tells you which fields are performing, and which are holding you back.
You may be weighing whether to continue with a particular field or put it under CSS. This was the situation for Jay, who said “being able to visualise my field-by-field data stopped me from putting one of my best performing fields into CSS.”
This a powerful example of the value of data-led decision making. Ensuring that the right fields are chosen for specific initiatives; retaining maximum value on farm by using land in the most efficient way.
You may have a tricky field, a natural contender for being taken out of production, but have you listened to that field’s data particularly? Do you know exactly how it compares with the others in your rotation? Accurate field-level data assessing productivity in both £/ha and £/t empowers these decisions.
Field level data also holds value and context for the wider operation, too. Jay says that “working backwards from a field level, you can see what impact certain areas are having on farm-wide yield.”
Decisions around crops and varieties also benefit from a data-led mindset. Refining these decisions through data can enhance your farm's efficiency and productivity, by ensuring your selections are tailored to your land and resources.
Your rotation, soil type and end market goals will all be weighed against the traits and qualities of a crop or variety you are choosing.
Assets like the RL/NL lists are great for this, regarding data on performance and disease resistance, but our tools can monitor crop and variety performance on your farm specifically.
Getting the most out of your inputs is crucial. Nitrogen use efficiency, spray regimes, and YAGRO's Tracker feature play a crucial role here. With accurate farm data analysis, you can monitor applications throughout the season and assess the associated costs. And then look back at your regime historically to assess its efficiency.
Efficient applications are especially important today considering the emphasis on environmental impact.
You’re recording your applications already – so why not have this data cleaned and visualised so you can identify any inefficiencies easily?
Buying and Selling
In today's volatile markets, efficient procurement and go-to-market strategies are vital for protecting your bottom line. Market intelligence, backed by accurate data, provides you with the insights you need to make more efficient decisions.
Protect your profit margins when purchasing inputs or selling your grain. Use YAGRO Marketwatch and MarketPlace to ensure you’re making effective decisions and getting the most from your budget and produce.
Efficiency is key to productivity and sustainability. It’s about making the most of what you have. The ability to make informed decisions quickly sets you apart in today’s rapidly evolving landscape.
Your farm data is your most valuable asset; allowing it to empower your decisions leads to a more efficient farming operation.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Luke Sayer joined our Marketing Team in March 2023. With a background in the Arable Trials sector and a First Degree in English, Luke is responsible for writing our articles and handling press relations. His journey in agriculture began in 2008, when he worked his first harvest. Over the next 15 years, Luke worked a dozen harvest seasons - becoming a full-time Arable Trials farmer from 2019 to 2023. He has farmed every type of cereal plus pulses and break crops, but specifically focused on developing better beta-glucan levels in Oat varieties. In his YAGRO articles, Luke emphasises the crucial role that data and technology play in modern agriculture. He believes that listening and responding to farm data is the surest way to increase sustainability and efficiency in this ever-evolving industry.