“Monitoring and managing thousands of acres can be a challenge. Now, imagine doing that on ground more than 5,600 miles away.
“I grow corn, soybeans, potatoes, wheat, flax, and peas in Russia, the Philippines, and in Ghana, Africa,” says Shane Peed, who lives in Fort Dodge, Iowa. “I was tracking production and equipment in 60 to 80 fields using an Excel spreadsheet, but it wasn’t efficient from afar.”
As if distance isn’t challenge enough, ensuring clear communication among foreign-speaking labor was also a hurdle. “It was important to have the ability for both Russians and Americans to use the same system,” he says.
Searching for years to find a system that would translate easily to languages other than English and would not be cost-prohibitive, Peed discovered Cropio in 2015. The satellite management system, which provides real-time updates on current field and crop conditions, met all of his criteria.
“Cropio converts to both languages very easily,” says Peed. “The company also adds features that are important to both American and international agronomy.”
Averaging less than $1 per acre, the price also offered a competitive advantage. “Many of the platforms I looked at did not align with my budget,” Peed says. “Price will be important as I continue to add more acres and equipment.”
To date, the system tracks around 17,000 acres in Russia and another 400 in Ghana. “By the end of next year, I expect to have around 200,000 acres on the Cropio system,” he says.
Another benefit to the system is what it didn’t include. While many of the other platforms he looked at included accounting, it wasn’t a priority for Peed.
“I wanted a system that was focused on production,” he says. “With Cropio, I know exactly what’s going on in my fields. The information is right there on my phone, so I can quickly and easily look up a field or a machine to find out what needs to be done.”