Our main view is that optimization follows the digitization and unification of all relevant information.
More often than not, the information needed to make optimal crop marketing decisions is usually already digitized in some form, but it’s sitting scattered across different data silos somewhere. It could be in an Excel sheet, on iPhone Notes or in emails. It could be inside software applications already in use on the farm to prepare crop plans, manage fields, or capture harvest totals from combine monitors and grain cart loads. When it comes to contracts, deliveries and settlements, it’s found as a mix of paper, PDFs and emails, or by logging into web portals and apps that access a farmer’s grain account balances with individual grain buyers they do business with.
Sound familiar? You’re not the only one frustrated by this – we are too!
What’s left to do is to combine it into one single place – a single crop marketing hub, as we like to call it. Figure out how to do this, and fully informed and ultimately optimal decisions can start happening.
One of our big beliefs is that we want to collaborate with as many digital tools already out there to bring all this information into one place. While farmers can type information into the app, as simple as we try to make this, ultimately nobody likes to waste their time typing. As a result we’ve had to be creative to avoid the inconvenience of typing and are working on multiple pathways to solve this.
One feature that’s seeing increasing uptake is our OCR – Optical Character Recognition – functionality. This allows for contracts, load tickets, and settlements to be uploaded into the app in whatever form – a picture, a PDF, a screenshot, an email forwarded directly to a personalized Combyne email – which our software then parses and digitizes. Once contract and delivery records are in the app, your crop inventory is automatically reconciled and reflects updated quantities based on how much has been committed, delivered, and left to sell. Regardless of which buyer the contract is from, or which elevator or processor handed you your load ticket, our OCR functionality digitizes your documents and stores them all in the same place for you to easily find.
Imagine an Excel sheet purposefully built for grain marketing, but without the need to type information into it in order to keep it up-to-date, and designed to fit on your phone so you can have all the information you need at your fingertips as you make decisions on-the-go.
1) Digitization is not only inevitable, it’s necessary for farmers to control their own crop marketing information.
2) Optimization follows digitization, meaning to get the most value out of key crop marketing information (inventory and trade documents) they must first be digitized in a central place. This is why Combyne has worked to make the process of getting your information into the app as simple as possible.
3) We are continuously looking into different ways to make this smoother and easier for farmers. If you would like to help out in this process please reach out to us and we’d be happy to have you join one of our research studies.
By Alain Goubau April 19, 2023
Optimization follows the digitization and unification of all relevant information.