For the third consecutive year, InfoAg will return to Union Station in St. Louis, Mo., for a 3-day conference on the practical application of precision farming techniques.
2016 also marks the first year that InfoAg will combine with the International Conference on Precision Agriculture (ICPA) in a weeklong event. InfoAg will be held from Aug. 2-4 with ICPA preceding it from July 31-Aug. 3.
The idea to combine the two events came about when conference organizers saw some overlap — about 100-150 people — of InfoAg and ICPA conference attendees.
“We thought it would be neat if the practitioners could talk with the academics, and the academics could mix and see how things are actually being used in the field,” says InfoAg conference secretary Quentin Rund, who has been working with the event since its formation in 1995 and has been attending ICPA since 1996.
InfoAg conference attendees will have the opportunity to attend the ICPA conference for a reduced registration fee and vice versa. From the afternoon of Aug. 2 to the morning of Aug. 4 when the two conferences overlap, attendees at either event will have the opportunity to attend any of the breakout sessions offered by both InfoAg and the ICPA.
Rund is excited to see what the two groups will bring to the discussion of precision agriculture. “Both groups are very dedicated to the precision farming field,” he says. “We just wanted to see if we could get those two perspectives together what kind of ideas might come out of that.”
InfoAg consists of an education program featuring breakout sessions dispersed throughout the 3 days and a trade show with 140 booths from 100 vendors. Attendees also have the opportunity to talk with speakers, conference sponsors and industry leaders to build your contact list, as Rund says.
“It’s hard to have the answers to all the questions that arise from the different aspects of precision farming, so it’s nice to build your network and meet some people who are specialists in different areas,” Rund says.
This year’s event will feature a variety of topics including the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) market, data protection and dealership management.
Some of the most topical sessions, according to Rund, include unmanned aerial system use in Brazil and Canada, making sense of data at the dealership level, a series on nitrogen models and a breakout session on the decisions farmers need to make in preparing for crop production.
“It gets it back to the agronomy and back to the practical application of this technology,” Rund says. “Really that’s what the event is all about — how to use this technology in crop production.”