Participants in this year’s Purdue Farm Management Tour will learn about innovative management strategies, new technologies for improving efficiency and productivity and ways to help ensure a successful transition of the family farm to the next generation.
The tour, sponsored by Purdue’s Center for Commercial Agriculture and Purdue Extension, is set for June 22 and 23. It will include stops at four farms in Carroll and Howard counties. “During these challenging economic times, adopting effective new management practices can help secure a family farm for future generations,” said Jim Mintert, director of the Center for Commercial Agriculture and tour organizer. “Our hosts will discuss a wide range of topics, including the use of cover crops, specialty crop production, automated grain systems, soil health and the importance of communication among family members, employees, and landlords.”
Each tour stop includes an interview session with the operators that provides an overview of the farm, followed by three mini-tour sessions focused on specific aspects of each farm’s operation.
The tour schedule:
June 22, 12:30 p.m. – Scott Farms, Delphi. A diversified crop farm, Scott Farms has a long history associated with the production of specialty crops, which are used to enhance profitability and mitigate risk. Learn how Scott Farms has incorporated the use of drones and variable rate technology into their cropping operation to improve efficiency.
June 22, 3:30 p.m. – Mylet Farms, Camden. The focus of Mylet Farms is on innovation, including an automated grain handling facility that includes use of a grain unloading app that can be run from a mobile device. Visitors will also have a chance to see the innovative Tribine Harvester, winner of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) 2016 award for Outstanding Ag Machinery Innovation. The Tribine is an articulated harvester featuring two engines and a 1,000-bushel grain tank.
June 23, 8:30 a.m. – Kirkpatrick Farm, Greentown. Operators Bryan and Susan Kirkpatrick, with their daughter, Andrea, raise corn and soybeans with an emphasis on improving the health and productivity of their land. Kirkpatrick’s were early adopters of precision ag technology and will share the expertise they’ve gained through the years with tour participants. Fred Whitford, clinical engagement professor and director of the Purdue Pesticide Programs, will also be on hand to help conduct a tour of Kirkpatrick’s innovative fertilizer storage facility.
June 23, 11:30 a.m. – The Farm Tour lunch will feature the annual Agricultural Outlook Update by Purdue agricultural economist Chris Hurt, followed by a visit to Maple Farms, Kokomo. Maple Farms is a multi-generation corn and soybean farm that has learned how good communications among staff, family members and landlords can improve management of the farm and prepare the farm for transition to another generation.
The tour is free, but registration is required to attend the June 23 lunch. To sign up for the lunch, go to https://ag.purdue.edu/commercialag/pages/programs/Farm-Tour.aspx or call 765-494-4310.
The Indiana Master Farmer Dinner will be held at 6 p.m. June 22 at the Wabash & Erie Canal Conference Center in Delphi. Tickets are $25 each and must be ordered by June 16 at https://ag.purdue.edu/agalumni/Documents/17MasterFarmerDinnerReservationForm.pdf or by calling 765-494-8593.