SOYL Newsletter June 2015

1. New kit considerations 

The show season is in full swing and as many growers will be looking at new equipment over the summer, it's important to check compatibility so that any purchases will fit in seamlessly on farm. 

If you have decided to drill, spread or spray using variable rate applications with SOYL using iSOYL, SOYL-OPTI or another third party VR controller, the next step is to make sure that your equipment is compatible.

Most VR controllers, including SOYL's, use the 9-pin serial communication method, or RS232. It is important to check that your equipment will work with this. A 9-pin connector (two rows of pins, 5 and 4), like an old computer plug, can usually be found on the rear or underside of your control box. Others use 25 pin or other plugs which may not seem so obvious. At this point you should contact your dealer, or SOYL, for confirmation.

A handful of ISOBUS controllers permit the use of RS232 connectivity. As the ISOBUS system is digital and RS232 is analogue, a converter is needed to ensure connectivity. Some manufacturers include the converter within the control box, while others offer a specialised external plug-in converter. Advice should be sought from the dealer or SOYL to confirm which will work. It may be possible to upgrade some older ISOBUS control boxes using adaptors, but always seek advice first.

If you are choosing new equipment for your variable rate tasks, always ask your dealer if it is compatible or ready to go; there is a difference. If they say yes, be sure to check that this is unconditional, as unlock codes or extra payment can sometimes be added on.

2. Increase in variable rate nitrogen users

Final applications of nitrogen on milling wheats are now complete, marking the end of SOYLsense 2015.

On average, this year's SOYLsense users received 13 satellite images over the season which helped them to manage variation of crop biomass on their farm. Growers will receive one final image in the first week of July which will provide a final assessment of canopies before harvest and show the benefits of their variable rate applications.

Extensive SOYLsense trials over the past six years have shown an average yield benefit of 3 to 8%. The advantages are clearly recognised by growers as more and more turn to precision techniques to optimise their yields; the number of SOYLsense users this year has increased by 12%.

As harvest approaches and preparations are made for the new season, a new SOYLsense website will be developed ready for next year's users. The new platform will give growers even more information and will be quicker and easier to use too, giving more control to users.

As always, the SOYLsense team will be available to create nitrogen recommendations and offer support and advice. If you have any questions or would like more information on how variable rate nitrogen applications can benefit your farm, please speak to your local SOYL contact or call the SOYLsense team on 01635 204198. 

3. Talk to the experts at upcoming events

Growers interested in increasing their yields and optimising production costs will be able to meet the SOYL team at several events over the coming weeks and months.

At Frontier's summer open days, which are underway at demonstration sites across the country, you can meet your local SOYL contacts to discuss your thoughts and questions on all things precision crop production, as well as see demonstrations of the iSOYL app and the SOYLsight UAV. Events are still to come in Aldbrough, Dingwall and Ashbourne; to learn more and book your free place, visit Frontier's events page.

You can also visit SOYL at Tillage Live to find out more about the latest developments in precision crop production and how they can bring agronomic, economic and environmental benefits to your business. This year's event takes place on Wednesday 16th September at Croft on Tees, Darlington. 

4. Fertiliser recommendations for harvest 2016 crop

We are already creating recommendations for the 2015/16 season.  If you have a cropping plan please send it toThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or request an electronic or paper form.

5. Meet Denise Wright

"I joined SOYL nearly four years ago as the accounts assistant. With a background in banking and financial services, joining a precision farming company was a steep learning curve!    

The accounts role is busy and demanding and the nature of the work means I face different scenarios every day and have conversations with both internal colleagues and customers. I'm responsible for invoicing for all of the SOYL services, including PK nutrient management and SOYLseed and as we're approaching our company year end, this time of year is especially busy. 

It?s important to us that our customers have a great experience when dealing with SOYL, from the point of sale right through to payment, so we strive to make the financial part of the process as accurate, straightforward and friendly as possible.

This year I became an ambassador for SOYL customer service too, so I train new staff to meet the company's high standards. This has included how to handle phone calls, to make sure that we all answer the phone in a professional and welcoming way. 

I enjoy the diversity of my role and, in such a rapidly developing industry, learning new things all the time. I like to learn about and get involved with other areas of the business and our growers and last year I helped to co-ordinate some of the winter workshops. I really enjoyed meeting customers face to face and hearing how passionate they are about their business and I hope to do more of this in the future."

Don?t forget you can follow us on Twitter @SOYLprecision for regular updates on soils, nutrients, machinery and GPS.

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