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Data companies merge – provides opportunities for farmers

Two of the largest developers of secure data repositories for farmer’s agronomic data have merged.

American Farm Bureau’s Mary Kay Thatcher says the merger between the Ag Data Coalition and the Grower Information Services Cooperative takes the best technologies from both platforms.

She says this is the only platform of its kind owned by growers.  “We’ll be a cooperative and operate just like growers are used to for other cooperatives,” she says.  “We’ll make their data safe, secure, portable, and hopefully down the road allow them to make some financial gains based on that data.”

Thatcher tells Brownfield the Cooperative will help farmers better manage the control of their information.  “The vast majority of farmers are saying that if companies are going to take my data and aggregate it and sell it and they’re going to profit from that,” she says.  “Farmers say it’s my data and I want to profit, too.  But, we’re not making much progress with companies wanting to accept that point of view.”

She says a large database that is farmer controlled and owned – puts growers in a better position to work with the companies that are already profiting from the agronomic information farmers share.

AUDIO: Mary Kay Thatcher, Farm Bureau

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