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Dear <<First Name>>:

National Ag Day, March 22nd, is here, and to celebrate, we want to recognize and thank you for everything you do to make agriculture successful. Agriculture faces constant pressures, both domestic and international, and your dedication helps feed a growing population.

This season, we’ve been working on expanding access to the FieldWatch® registries and the value they provide to producers, beekeepers and applicators. We welcome West Virginia as a new state member of FieldWatch. We’re thankful to be able to start connecting with more of you in person and look forward to seeing you throughout the year.

Enjoy our spring newsletter,
Bob Walters
 
Registry Upgrades

FieldWatch is continually working to improve the value provided by our crop and apiary registries. That’s why we are happy to announce a few upgrades that will help producers build a robust database. The upgrades will be available to crop producers in all states.

As of the 2022 growing season, the row crops that were exclusive to CropCheck® have been added to DriftWatch® to allow all crop producers access to additional row crops. Registration for rice, cotton, corn and soybeans was previously available in only five states and is now available to all producers to help communicate sensitive locations. States can choose if they wish to map these row crops at no added cost to the state. This expansion will streamline information available to applicators and improve communication among participants.

Registered beekeepers and crop producers who receive renewal notices may now enjoy one-click renewal for the registries they are using, making it easy for them to keep their account information up-to-date. Users who don’t want to use one-click renewal can log into BeeCheck® or DriftWatch to renew or update their account information.
West Virginia Joins FieldWatch

The West Virginia Department of Agriculture has joined FieldWatch in our mission to enhance communication to promote stewardship activities between producers, beekeepers and pesticide applicators. West Virginia joins FieldWatch members representing 22 other states, the District of Columbia and Saskatchewan. Producers and beekeepers of West Virginia can now register their fields and apiaries using our free and voluntary FieldWatch registries. Applicators can verify if a location is safe to spray, helping to prevent drift and damage to beehives.

West Virginia’s membership decision was especially driven by the needs of beekeepers who wanted to register the locations of their apiaries. 

Curt Hadley, Business Development Manager at FieldWatch, spoke recently at the West Virginia Beekeepers Association. “The goal is to get beekeepers and producers registered through FieldWatch, so applicators can get accurate information before spraying. This model has been proven to build good stewardship and communication in agriculture.” 

West Virginia’s Commissioner of Agriculture Kent Leonhardt said, “The future of agriculture is integrating technology with best practices and the knowledge that has been passed down through the generations. Giving our West Virginia beekeepers online tools is another way to modernize agriculture in the Mountain State. I am thankful for this partnership with FieldWatch, Inc.” 


America Celebrates National Ag Day

The Agriculture Council of America organizes National Ag Day to celebrate the hard work and contributions of the ag industry. One individual making a difference in our nation’s agriculture is Debbie Hamrick, Director of Specialty Crops of the North Carolina Farm Bureau Federation. We asked her what makes her so passionate about her work and her role on the FieldWatch board of directors.

FieldWatch (FW): What does your role at the North Carolina Farm Bureau Federation entail?

Debbie Hamrick (DH): The portfolio of issues I work on is broad and includes topics such as produce safety, the conventional and sustainable agricultural interface, local foods, value-added entrepreneurship and others. I like to say the areas I cover are the brightly colored threads in the state’s agricultural quilt. 

FW: Why have you chosen a career in agriculture?

DH: There was never a question that the focus of my life’s work would be oriented outdoors around plants. Early on in college at NC State University, I discovered the field of horticulture. Not only is the field intellectually stimulating, but markets are interwoven internationally.

FW: How would you characterize FieldWatch’s role in the agriculture industry?

DH: Users of FieldWatch mapping tools access the information they need wherever they happen to be at the time. Our mapping tools create lines of awareness, communication and connectedness among farmers, beekeepers and pesticide applicators.

FW: What would you like to say to our readers on National Ag Day?

DH: The past 24 months have given all Americans reason to appreciate what farmers and the agriculture and food industries do every day to benefit the sustenance and quality of our lives. But more than any other category of work, farming, agriculture and food connect us to one another and to the earth. It’s work with purpose, and that gives meaning to life.

 
New Collaboration with the Illinois Farm Bureau

FieldWatch is partnering with the Illinois Farm Bureau, Illinois Department of Agriculture and Illinois Fertilizer & Chemical Association on a promotional campaign to spread the word about our mapping registries to producers, beekeepers and pesticide applicators across the state. The campaign included print and digital ads (shown below) and an article in FarmWeek and a daily 30-second spot on RFD radio.


Defining FieldWatch's Sustainability Story

Sustainability has been embraced by the agriculture industry and is a topic of high interest among consumers. Companies in the food and ag value chain are expected to set and meet sustainability goals. FieldWatch is in a unique position to enable increased transparency within the food and ag value chain. Through our registries, we help organizations protect pollinators, strengthen product stewardship and expand communication with their stakeholders.

Starting last year, we began articulating FieldWatch’s sustainability story. Our value proposition is that we support sustainable practices that protect pollinators, plants and people through enhanced communication, awareness and stewardship. Our board has been supportive of this position, and starting this year, we will begin connecting with organizations in the food value chain that aren’t very familiar with FieldWatch yet, such as food companies and food retailers. Our goal is to raise awareness of our mission and to explore potential collaborations.
 

Meeting and Greeting

Thanks to the easing of travel restrictions, we have been grateful for the opportunity to say hello and get to know many of you in person. We have been actively raising awareness and educating participants on how FieldWatch works to improve collaboration and good stewardship through our registries.

Here are a few events we participated in recently:
  • PrecisionAg Vision Conference, Glendale, AZ
  • North Central Indiana Beekeepers, Westfield, IN
  • Colorado Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association Conference, Denver, CO
  • Association of American Pesticide Control Officials Conference, Alexandria, VA
  • AgTech Innovation Summit, Champaign, IL
  • Commodity Classic, New Orleans, LA
  • West Virginia Beekeepers Association, Morgantown, WV
If there is a conference you would like to see us at, let us know! Submit your request on our website here.
 
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Our mailing address:
FieldWatch, Inc.
1281 Win Hentschel Blvd. Suite 1300
West Lafayette, IN 47906

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