Is this what you think of when you picture a farmer? Maybe a man wearing overalls and a baseball cap, mud boots and a trusty dog? Does he have a straw hat and carry a pitch fork? Is he riding a tractor or a horse? Try drawing, painting, or sketching your own picture of what you see in your mind when you think of a “farmer.”
For many farmers mud boots will always be a fact of life, but the modern farmer might not be what you think. This is a picture of Daddy in his tractor.
Yes, he sometimes wears coveralls (mostly in the winter) but check out this tractor cab! If the flashing screens and hands-free headset weren’t in your original drawing, you are not alone. Most people don’t understand the technology involved in modern agriculture.
Did you know farmers use some of the most advanced technology on the planet? In fact the level of research being done to help farmers feed the world is matched only by the military. Have you ever seen a car driving without a person behind the wheel? This technology is still a dream for the future, but today Daddy can sit in his tractor, watch his monitors, check the seed spacing, and control the planters functions and not even touch the steering wheel.
In this picture you see the planter’s Precision 20/20 monitor, which shows all kinds of information about how the seeds are going in the ground. The GPS monitor shows a picture of the field, where he needs to plant, what has been planted, and how fast he is going. You can also see the ipad, which records all of that information and allows Daddy to add in more data, like how much fertilizer was added to the field and what the yield turns out to be in the fall. Using the apps on this ipad Daddy can see which kinds of seed did well, exactly where we need more fertilizer (preventing excess chemical use), what kind of fertilizer (making your food more nutritious), and lots more! You can’t see it, but also in the cab is an ipod, where Daddy can listen to both music and pod casts of radio farm shows. The smart phone hangs from the window, allowing Daddy to check the weather with a radar app or make a call to the person running the seed tender with his hands-free jaw bone. And yes, he can also post to facebook if he wants!
So tell me– is this what you expected the modern farmer to look like?
*Painting from risingartist.com, Artshop 77