Sprouting Technology


For thousands of years farmers have been rolling up their sleeves, sinking their hands into the fertile soil working the land. Now, thanks to new technologies, this age old profession is changing in ways most us can't imagine

Technology has found a home on the farm. Growers are using a computer mouse just as much as a tractor. Bessie produces 10 gallons of milk every day. So do 1,700 of her close friends at D&B Dairy in Jefferson County. Keeping track of this many cows is a daunting task, but one that owner David Arnold can do with the click of a mouse.

Arnold says all this information at his fingertips helps him keep his cows comfortable. Hines Boyd is a director at the Florida Department of Agriculture. He also helps run the 170-year-old family farm. He says keeping the farm in the family has been tough but technology and diversity have kept it profitable.

Agriculture is a global business and experts say if America is going compete in these fields, technology is key.

"The edge that the U.S. grower has is he is the most technified grower across the world. In his drive to produce cotton it's important that he keeps up with the latest technology so that he has that advantage."

As for Florida's economy, agriculture sprouts about $50 billion. The mom and pop organizations need to find a niche crop, something specialized to make it in the field these days.