This post is sponsored by U.S. Cellular, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
Living in Wisconsin you can’t drive far without spotting a farm. You would probably be surprised to see just how much technology farms implement these days. I definitely encourage you to visit a local farm if you have an opportunity, around here we have annual events like breakfast at the farm where you can have breakfast right at the source. We also have a local dairy farm that makes their own ice cream on site, and we have a local goat farm that features a restaurant and shop and of course a viewing area of the adorable baby goats. Told you Wisconsin has a lot of farms.
Ice cream is so much cooler when you can see the cows that helped make it on site.
Farms across the U.S. are achieving more with smart technology daily. In a small town like Newark, Mo. with a population of 90, a strong signal is crucial in keeping operations running smoothly. U.S. Cellular is a national carrier that offers coverage where the other carriers don’t, which helps to power operations throughout the farm. YouTube star and tech enthusiast, Judner Aura, spent a day in the life of a farmer at Sharpe Farms and Heartland Creamery in Newark, Mo. to showcase how smart technology and a strong cellular network like U.S. Cellular not only keeps the farm running, but increases productivity and efficiency. Smart technology is changing the way both rural and urban communities live and work, and U.S. Cellular helps those in big and small cities, and in the middle of anywhere to stay connected.
Here are some ways smart technology can be used on the farm:
- Vehicle/Fleet Monitoring: The farm’s John Deere tractors have GPS technology that use U.S. Cellular’s network to provide remote monitoring, and access to the controls and input/output of the tractors. The farm’s team uses their iPads to access this information and track the location of each tractor, which allows remote support of the fleet.
- Irrigation/Soil Monitoring: They use a technology called variable rate seeding to take soil samples of the fields to formulate a “prescription” based on the data of the nutrients and pH levels of the soil. The prescription is then run by their fertilizer spreaders in the tractors which are automatically controlled to provide the correct nutrients to the right spots in each field, providing a greater crop yield. The irrigation system includes 11 pivots that are controlled remotely using an app on their smartphone or tablet.
- Wearables for Goats: The goats are all fitted with radio frequency identification ankle bracelets. These bracelets are scanned with a wand device, so they can identify any of the 2,000+ goats. Helpful information such as the goat’s age, vaccinations and milk fat percentage can easily be looked up on their mobile devices. They implement a similar device with calves at a local dairy farm.
- Cheese Production: All of the goat’s milk, which is about 7,000 pounds a day, is converted into cheese. Since 2005, the Creamery has grown to a current daily production capability of 6,000 pounds of handcrafted fresh and aged cheese. Real-time access via their mobile devices to information about the quality of the milk, temperature of the coolers and tanks helps to make the process more efficient, leads to better quality and yields increased production volume. Overall, Heartland Creamery has been able to cut cheese production time down by 67% with the use of smart technology that allows them to monitor and power operations remotely.
I’m sure as time goes on farms will be even more full of technology and it’s such a fun change to see.