USDA Report Says Farmers Adopting Precision Ag at Different Rates


Farmers are adopting precision technologies at different rates. A USDA report says the largest farms are adopting auto-steer guidance technology at significantly higher rates.

After sorting farms into five equally-sized groups, the agency found that among farmers who were growing corn in 2016, 73 percent of farms in the largest category adopted guidance at the highest rates. The rates were similar for the largest farms growing other commodities in later years: 82 percent of the largest winter wheat farms in 2017, 68 percent of the largest soybean farms in 2018, and 67 percent of the largest cotton farms in 2019.

Adoption rates were smaller among the smallest farms in the country: 10 percent of the smallest corn farms in 2016, 11 percent of the smallest soybean farms in 2018, and seven percent of the smallest winter wheat farms in 2017. However, fifty percent of the smallest cotton farms have adopted the technology.