Growers look to their agronomists to provide them with products and technologies that will allow them to maximize yields.
However, the relationship between grower and agronomist extends beyond just buying and selling. Through working together, growers and agronomists develop a bond of mutual trust that allows them to go through the growing season as business partners instead of just retailer and customer.
Here are four examples of how agronomists and growers work and how they each benefit from working together:
1. Facing Challenges & Finding Solutions
Agronomists know as well as growers that not every year is the same in terms of weather or economic conditions. Good agronomists will be educated on possible solutions to the challenges that vary by year, and will be able to pass along that knowledge to their growers. John Muske, the agronomy sales manager for CHS Northern Plains in South Dakota, suggested using Aventine Complete™ to one of his growers to help boost value this year:
“One of the things that we thought was very important in 2015 with fallen commodity prices is, we wanted to make sure that our team is bringing value to our growers and bringing value-added products to our growers. When we look at saving fertility dollars or seed dollars, we want to make sure that we’re making the right choices and the right recommendations.” – John Muske, CHS Northern Plains, Gettysburg, SD
2. Trust Based On Prior Knowledge
Growers are more likely to try a product or technology if it is suggested to them by agronomists that they trust and with whom they already have a working relationship. When the agronomist gets to know the grower and the conditions of his or her soil, the agronomist can provide suggestions based on both current needs and previous efforts made by the growers. Randy Hanson from Glenham, South Dakota uses his agronomist’s knowledge to his advantage:
“I rely on a lot of professionals, like my agronomist, to guide me, and do the newest and best thing coming. We don’t have a huge farm, so we get the best out of our ground that we can, the best production that you can.” – Randy Hanson, Hanson Horseshoe Ranch, near Glenham, SD
3. Mutual Benefit
When agronomists genuinely have the best intentions for their growers and when growers genuinely trust their agronomist’s judgment, we will typically see great results.
Tait Cooper, an agronomist from Dalhart Consumer Co-op, explains how being able to deliver positive results and having the trust of his growers makes his job easier.
“Anybody will vouch for me on this, when you go and talk to a grower, and they’re out there saying “Hey, I see a difference in this stuff, I see my plant health is overall better” and then especially when it comes down to yield. When they’re out here and they can actually see that difference on the yield monitor, it makes my job a lot easier, because you gain that trust with them, and they’re willing to listen to you about any other things you have to offer. So when you can come out here and show them this and show them pictures that it’s actually working, it’s just kind of a good feeling to know you have that trust with the grower.” – Tait Cooper, Dalhart Agronomist
4. Seeing Results
The agronomists get to see firsthand how the product or technology they suggested is working in the field, and can use the data they collect to inform the grower of future recommendations. If the product or technology is doing well, then it provides the agronomist with credibility and the grower is more likely to trust his or her judgment in the future.
“Just being able to come out here and see the results, and be able to look at what it actually is doing in the field to back up what Redline® is on paper, especially to see it working, it’s a pretty good deal. Also when the grower notices that his fields are looking healthier overall, it makes things easier to come out and look at, it makes it more of an interest to keep looking at.” – Tait Cooper, Dalhart Agronomist