Farmers in the Midwest are adopting and using field data management software more than their peers in other regions of the United States. In addition, farmers using this type of software generally run large farms, are young and are investing for long- term profitability.

These are but a few key findings from the latest market information about field data management practices revealed in the latest Field Data Management Practices Grower Survey. Conducted by Stratus Ag Research, the study examined farmer attitudes about field data management, changes they plan to implement in the next three years and their attitudes about collecting, aggregating and analyzing individual farm data.

“In the last 10-15 years, many farmers have adopted emerging technologies to try and increase profitability, decrease input costs and improve efficiencies,” says Krista MacLean, Stratus project manager. “In this study, we examined rates of adoption of data management software. The increased use of many precision ag technologies has created a huge volume of data and we wanted to understand what farmers were doing with it.

“For example,” she adds, “More growers use free software than those who pay for software access, a fact solutions providers or equipment manufacturers may want to consider.”

Additional key findings include:
• Whether using free or purchased software, only 30% are satisfied with
what they are currently using or have used.
• More than 75% of growers capture data, but few do little, if anything with
the information.
• Security concerns about unauthorized access to data remain high.
• Growers cite analyzing historical data and having all records in one place as the
two top reasons for using data management software.
• Farmers are unfamiliar with the differences in software brands.

The study examines these and other findings about geography, behaviors and demographics of growers in California, the Midwest, the Pacific Northwest and the South.

“There are many reasons farmers adopt new technology and reasons they don’t,” MacLean says. “Our grower survey sheds light on how growers plan to adopt data management technology and how quickly. The analysis, combined with the candidness of those surveyed, offer insights into opportunities that those who market software solutions to farmers can’t ignore.”

More information about the research is available from Stratus Research at or by calling 204-745-5853.