The latest new tools, traits & more
Big show this year
Agricultural companies showcased a range of new products and services before a large gathering at the Agricultural Media Summit in Albuquerque, New Mexico, this week. This year's conference, which includes media representatives from the crop and livestock sectors, has drawn more than 600 attendees from 39 states.
Staff from the Climate Corporation displayed reports from their Total Weather Insurance product designed to pay out for adverse weather at higher yields and more frequently that MPCI. This year more than 85% of TWI policy holders have already qualified for payouts, said Jeff Hamlin. "We expect that farmers will be receiving checks by the first week of September," he added.
A better bale processor
Vermeer staff touted the new BPX9000 Bale Processor, which improves the bale rotation of prior models by feeding bales more consistently into the rotor, while reducing the need for operators to reverse rotation of the bale when feeding. A split shaft allows for easier maintenance without removing the entire bed.
A cost-cutting forage
The Alta Seeds company showcased brachytic forage, a forage sorghum the company expects will compete with corn silage for acres next season. It costs $215 per acre less to produce than corn silage, and its feed value is equal to or better, Alta Seeds representatives told Agriculture.com. Drought conditions have heightened interest in the crop this year.
Ag Leader introduced the company's new Hydraulic Down Force that enables growers to monitor and control planter down force on-the-go. One of the top features of the system is its ability to adjust pressure instantaneously, said Lori Costello (left), communications manager. The product will be available for spring 2013, Costello said.
New in windrowers
AGCO took to the trade show floor to promote Massey Ferguson's new WR Series Windrowers. Models span 100-220 horsepower and feature many advances, including an onboard virtual computer terminal, electro-hydraulic precision steering, and a new air suspension seat.
Polaris shows off their new Ranger XP 900 utility vehicle, which offers a 60-horsepower engine, an all-new drivetrain, a newly-designed chassis with a five-inch longer wheelbase, electronic power steering, and brighter headlights. In addition, a new "Lock & Ride Pro-Fit Cab" consists of component mounting points engineered into the vehicle.
Topcon’s booth displayed their latest X30 console, a visual interface for the brand's System 350 autosteer technology. The console features a 12.1-inch high resolution touch screen with a 1.6 GHz processor and up to 32 GB of memory.
Michelin will be launching of its YieldBib radial tire later this month, according to Meredith Rigdon, communications manager for Michelin North America. It's part of Michelin's move into Improved-Flexion (IF) and Very-High Flexion (VF) radial tires.
Unverferth Manufacturing announced a new patent for its Seed Runner tender's unique self-filling design. The dual-compartment Unverferth Seed Runner seed tender delivers and unloads bulk or bagged seed to a planter or drill, while enabling the conveyor to rotate 180 degrees for filling itself.
No white mold this year?
If there's a silver lining from this year's drought in many areas, it's lack of white mold in soybeans. If conditions do return to normal, though, this scourge of soybeans could snap back. MANA officials note its Incognito fungicide features white mold control.
Plan on a normal year
Don't change your hybrid and variety selection for 2013 based on what happened in 2012. That’s the message from Bruce Kettler, director of public relations for Beck's Hybrids. "Plan on a normal year," he says. "Planning for a drought year is a sure way to short your yields,” he adds.
Stroll the trade show at the Ag Media Summit (photos, information by John Walter, Justin Davey & Gil Gullickson).