Report: 60 percent of farmers don't have enough internet connect

Report: 60 percent of farmers don't have enough internet connectivity

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A new report from the United Soybean Board shows that 60 percent of farmers believe their internet is not reliable enough to run their business and 78 percent of farmers do not have the benefit of choosing their own provider. 

Additionally, less than a quarter of farmers found their internet to be fast.

"For agriculture, a data-intensive U.S. industry, slow, unreliable internet is the norm, according to the United Soybean Board study, Rural Broadband and the American Farmer: Connectivity Challenges Limit Agriculture’s Economic Impact and Sustainability," the study's executive summary reads. "Like any business managers in the U.S., farmers rely on internet connections in their offices. However, with today’s technology, they also need connectivity in their fields. American farmers get online for everything from market and weather information to banking and need connectivity to process soil fertility data, use autosteer and much more."

The study also revealed an increasing number of farmers want to use more resources. More than 50 percent of farmers would like to use more data but lack the connectivity to do so and more than 90 percent use a cell phone for internet access while in the field. 

“We use the internet for anything and everything,” said Alan H., an Illinois soybean and corn farmer who participated in the study.

“My first source of information is to look online,” added Wade W., a soybean, corn and beef cattle farmer from Nebraska. “We follow commodity markets to make sure we’re up to date on prices throughout the day. We monitor our soil moisture sensor data. Or, if something breaks or electronics stop working, we look online for solutions.”

The study concludes that like any other industry, reliable internet is the linchpin for the success of farmers. 

You can read the full report here

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