Day Two: Oct. 15

*Topics, sessions, and times are subject to change

Thursday, Oct. 15 | Day Two

Registration & Breakfast

  1. Registration & Breakfast

  2. Welcome & Opening Remarks

Session VI: Improving the Agricultural Industry with Advancements in Technology

Featuring talks on drones and self-spraying systems, next-generation biofertilizers and biopesticides, and more.

Moderator: Luke Bozeman, Director, Research and Development Agricultural Solutions, North America, BASF

  1. Keynote: Drone Technology in Agriculture

    Manojit Basu, Ph.D. | Managing Director Science Policy of CropLife America

    Drones or Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s) are gaining popularity in different sectors and agriculture is currently one of the fastest-growing markets for this technology. UAVs will very soon change agriculture as it is done today and become an indispensable tool to help farmers and the agriculture industry in becoming more efficient in the field, and make more informed crop management decisions. This session will focus on where the technology is today, its adoption, and future possibilities.

  2. Spray Drift from a Drone Application in a Controlled Wind Speed Environment

    Dr. Tim Lane | Principal Research Scientist of Battelle

    Utilizing drones to spray crops and vineyards in difficult terrain is both an economical and time-saving approach. No label guidance exists for drone applications and registrants are concerned about off-label uses. A DJI Agras MG-1P drone was used for testing spray drift in an ambient breeze tunnel, set at a constant 10 mph. Filter pads were placed downwind to measure deposition. The product sprayed was imidacloprid (Admire Pro). For a foliar application to grape, four TeeJet AIXR110015 nozzles were used for application. Filter pads were analyzed by LC-MS. The resulting analysis provides registrants a means to evaluate drone applications for spray drift and provide guidance for labeling.

  3. Challenges and Opportunities for Spray Drones in Agriculture

    Dan Martin | Research Agricultural Engineer of USDA-ARS Aerial Application Technology Research Unit

    Spray drone technology has readily been available in Asia for many years now but only recently introduced into the US market.  Federal regulations for safe integration of drones into the national airspace is one reason for slow adoption here in the US.  As technology advances, prices fall and federal and state regulators become more comfortable with the safety of these remotely piloted systems, more units are finding their way into the hands of a new generation of aerial applicators.  Some are traditional pilots, but many more are growers and twenty somethings that love practical technology (or technology with a purpose, your call).

    In this presentation, I will discuss some of the challenges associated with spray drone technology in the US but will also address the many opportunities this new application platform affords.

  4. Application of UAV for Pest Control and Ag Workforce Development

    Jae Ryu | Associate Professor of University of Idaho

    An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV, also known as drone) is used to collect lygus bugs and aphid, the most damaging insects in several critical crops (e.g., alfalfa seed, onion, and potato). Although drones are widely used for agriculture using remote sensing technologies, little research has been done for mission-oriented actionable drone applications, such as insect sampling.

    During the presentation, we will discuss how the fast-moving drone technology can be used to improve insect monitoring, sampling, and treatment with chemical spot-spraying systems. A drone education program known as “Idaho Drone League (iDrone)” will be also introduced to the AgChem audience by stimulating ag future workforce.         

  5. Networking & Coffee Break

  6. Patterns in the rhizosphere microbiome that lead to improved plant growth

    Jacob Parnell | Scientist of Novozymes

    Plants can lose anywhere from 30-40% of their carbon resources through exudates. The amount of resources only make evolutionary sense in light of the recruitment of a microbiome that provides a substantial benefit to plant fitness. We explored the rhizosphere microbiome of corn and soybeans in different soils to identify key organisms and functional groups that are recruited by these plant exudates.

    We present two case studies where we examine the plant health benefits of adding key organisms or functional groups, one in corn and one in soybeans. We saw a significant increase in chlorophyll content (8-13% over control) in microplot and greenhouse trials in corn, and a significant increase in pod count (15% over control) in greenhouse trials for soybeans. These studies show how Novozymes is using the rhizosphere microbiome to find biological solutions to improve plant health.  

  7. Panel: Challenges of Using Drones for Farming

    Panelist include BASF, Syngenta, USDA, Battelle, and Rantizo

    Moderator: Luke Bozeman, Director, Research and Development Agricultural Solutions, North America, BASF


    • Daniel E Martin, Aerial Application Technology Research, Research Engineer, USDA
    • Timothy Lane, Principal Research Scientist, Battelle
    • Michael Ott, CEO, Rantizo
    • Neill Newton, Senior Product Application Specialist, Syngenta
  8. Networking Lunch

Session VII: Applying Innovation and Emerging Technologies to Business

This session will cover breakthroughs in safety of pesticides, the challenges of applying emerging tech to an existing business model, how the emerging technologies will change the functionality of the product.

Moderator: Bonnie MacCulloch, knoell USA

  1. Do More with Less

    Joshua Haslun | Analyst - Agro Innovation Team of Lux Research

    Production agriculture struggles with low margins (e.g. high input costs and low product values), high resource use (e.g. land, water, labor, inputs), and today more than ever, the added pressure to reduce environmental impacts. These challenges amount to a tremendous ask of growers: “Do more with less.”  But as Lux Research’s interactions with industry leaders demonstrate, industry agrichemical majors face an even more difficult ask: “Grow your business on declining sales.”  As an independent thought leader in innovation strategy, we connect the need to “do more with less” to the technology and business model innovations that allow you to avoid the characteristic race to the bottom associated with volume businesses, while gaining advantage in a rapidly changing industry.

  2. Key Trends, Emerging Challenges and Issues for Food & Agriculture Input Providers in 2020

    Jay Byrne | President of v-Fluence

    An overview of the global state of ag chemical and seed industry freedom to operate challenges including major advocacy, trade, political, litigation and commercial influences. Jay Byrne, an industry veteran with more than 25 years tracking and providing issues management support in the agriculture production vertical, will provide insights from v-Fluence global issues intelligence and stakeholder research data into the key challenges and opportunities for industry crop chemical and seed innovation providers. Categories: Current state of the industry/ How to support the chemical industry on educating the general public

  3. Closing Remarks and Farewell Advisory Board

    Brittany Onslow, Conference Producer, Smithers