Brandon Bonk may look like a traditional farmer. But this 28-year-old fifth-generation farmer is a different breed.
His equipment is guided over nearly 3,000 acres he tends by satellites and microchips. His seed is morphed in labs to resist bugs and droughts. His fertilizer is rationed by sensors and software to encase the seed only, with nothing extra left to sit on the soil or leach into waterways.
Back in the farmhouse, a computer details soil sample results and analyses. It provides insight for fertilizer recommendations.
Bonk's farm is like many today: driven by technology that raises yields, limits runoff and adjusts to changing weather, pests and commodity prices.
It's known as "precision farming," and it isn't a luxury, said Dave Wharry, a farm tech guru.
"Precision ag is all about the right product, in the right amount, in the right place, at the right time."
For more, see: Technology is king down on the farm