Mankato, MN --- Farmers and agriculture firms are gathering in Mankato for The 2019 Minnesota Ag Expo.


The event runs today and tomorrow and features everything from speakers to ongoing research.

Corn and Soybean growers' joint effort helps connect everyone in the agricultural industries, which can be crucial in a field where new finds are made and technology keeps advancing.
 
"You know what we were hearing from farmers is 'It's great that you can give me these pictures, but what do I do with the data? How is it actionable?' so that's a trend you're seeing more and more I think over the last couple years is companies that have figured out how to process that data and so something actionable in the growing season about it," says Minnesota Corn Growers Association Executive Director, Adam Birr. 


Everyone from the farmers using the technology and the researchers at the forefront of technological advancements are present at the show every year.
 
"It's a different setting in terms of where we're doing the development in the laboratory, they're doing the hard work of developing in the field," says University of Minnesota chemistry professor, Thomas Hoye, "in real time and having to make judgement calls and the research of different types that we do can certainly be very beneficial and impactful there as well."


Educational institutions are adapting to industry demands as South Dakota State University recently added a four-year degree in precision agriculture and is the only school in the nation to do so.
 
"Precision Agriculture degree is really a meshing of the agronomy, engineering, math, computer sciences, all those things come together in one degree and our students aren't just preparing for jobs today as our president Barry Dunn says, we're preparing students for careers that don't even exist yet and I think that's kind of a cool thing that we can do," says Brad Blaha, coordinator of recruiting and academic services for SDSU's College of Ag, Food and Environmental Sciences.


A recent SDSU Graduate and young farmer, Ryan Vos, says the technology is worth investing in.
 
"So we use precision planning, we use different hybrids, planting variable rate, we use auto-steer and all that stuff and actually that's something me and my dad do a lot with. And it's a worthwhile push I mean, when you got all this data why not use it?" says Vos.


The expo continues tomorrow from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Verizon Center.