Hoobers Inc. a well known agriculture equipment dealership among the East Coast is one that has seen technology change over the years. Our class was toured around the Middletown dealership by two employees that are excellent in the precision ag. field and taught us the broad history of Hoobers and what they do on a daily basis. Hoobers Inc. was first started in 1941 in Intercourse, Pa where Charles Hoober sold International Harvesters. Since 1941 the company has expanded to 9 locations covering 4 different states and continues to adapt to the new technology available to farmers. One aspect that really stands out compared to other companies today is that Hoobers is still owned and operated by the same family that means they really know and believe in their product. After the two employees taught us some history they took us on a tour of the Middletown facility where we got to see the products and services they provide to farmers.
Growing up on a large grain farm I was familiar with Hoobers Inc. and precision agriculture for my family is a huge customer to the company. However I did not realize that this company was a 3rd generation operation, which appeals to me and gives me a sense of trust towards the company. I also thought that the drone was quite interesting because while my family uses precision ag. for our equipment we do not currently take-advantage of drones. I believe this technology could save my family money in the future because we currently use two different agriculture consultant companies to scout our fields but with the technology of drones we could scout ourselves, which could possibly reduce or eliminate the scouting cost.
The picute above is my classmates and myself on one of the tractors we were able to opperate
Being able to understand todays agriculture and how we get our food from farms to markets is an unbelieveable experience. The technology we have today, helps us further agriculture along with being able to feed over seven billion people! One of the main ways that agriculture has become easier for farmers is GPS systems. WIth this power farmers are able to use drones to scope out either the issues that are in their crop so they can make adjustments for the next set of crops. While at Hoobers we got the opportunity to see two different drones. One of the drones had the power to fly over an hour and has differnt cameras to show drout in crops! The other drone was able to fly for about thirty minutes but was able to fly by the users phone. The technologyg used today is not only invested in drones; tractors have the capibility to have automatic stearing and can be positioned by satalites to keep in a very precise line and cause little to no errors with the spacing in the crops!Technology is beyong incredibe and will continue to grow and imrpove the world around us.
This Saturday we visited Hoober’s equipment company. Seeing their showroom, combines, tractors, and drones was very interesting. I was shocked to learn that one of their drones cost $10,000! The fixed wing drone could fly for about an hour, and take hundreds of different pictures of a farmer’s crop. I never knew exactly how much went into being successful at precision agriculture until I learned about all of the amazing technology that Hoobers can supply to their clients. Aside from using drones, they can outfit old and new farm vehicles with hi-tech devices like auto steering and numerous sensors. I also enjoyed seeing the garage where the mechanics worked on different combines, sprayers, and tractors. At the end of our field trip, we all got to drive a tractor and see what it is like. Even though it is a massive piece of equipment, it was surprisingly easy to maneuver and drive. Overall, I learned a lot and enjoyed our visit to Hoober’s.
This past Saturday field trip to Hoober’s was an eye opener into the equipment side of agriculture. It really put into perspective the amount of labor and money that goes into each machine. It did make me appreciate the investment each machine really is and I do agree with Mark that whenever I pass by a machine again I will know more about it and appreciate how much money and time that farmer actually has put into that machine. Of course with technology, it is not perfect but lucky for people that own Hoober equipment they have a great repair shop with specialized mechanics to handle specific pieces of equipment. When a machine has to be fixed that is time and money wasted on repairs for the farmer. Having someone who is specialized for one machine is great for fixing it in an efficient amount of time because they know what they are doing so the farmer can get right back to using it.
I learned about a couple pieces of equipment they had like the combine, sprayers, and planters that I had never been that close to before. The tires were taller than I was! The best part was being able to ride and drive one of the planters. It was a lot smoother than I thought it was going to be and it even had a radio and air conditioning. The amazing technology allowed you to pick a straight line and the machine would straighten itself out and go along that straight line for you. They even had drones that could look at the whole field of crops and tell which plants were not growing efficiently. Drones are great for raising the farmers’ crop yield. Precision Ag is changing constantly to help farmers grow even more crops and faster.
On our class trip to Hoober’s, we learned how important technology is in agriculture and how that trend will continue to increase. They explained what precision ag entails and how much easier and efficient it has made farming. Hoobers biggest sellers for precision ag products are sprayers and retrofitting old planters with the newest technology, making it more economically viable. They explained how the always changing technology makes their job exciting, but also how keeping up with it is one of the biggest challenges. The burnout rate for working with precision ag was only 18 months! It was amazing to see how specialized the mechanics at Hoober’s were; they had combine mechanics, sprayer mechanics, planter mechanics, etc. and it made sense after seeing how many parts went with each piece of equipment. It was also interesting to see how advanced drones have become and how they have become a big part of agriculture. The trip really showed how essential it is to be computer competent if studying agriculture because that is unquestionably the future.
This past Saturday, I spent the day at Hoobers! I was able to look at different type of precision AG machinery, such as auto-steer, and seed squirters. Seed Squirters are a way to get water to a plant without over watering and limiting the amount of diseases. I was also able to take a look at different types of machinery such as sprayers, tractors, and quadtracs. I was extremely excited to get to drive the sprayer, and I was blown away at the amount of technology inside the cab. To see how big and expensive these machines are, is truly amazing. People underestimate how hard it is to be a farmer, and to see the type of technology that they use and how complex it is, is very eye-opening. I very much enjoyed my time at Hoobers and I hope I’ll be able to visit again.
On October 7th, 2017, my classmates and I had the opportunity to tour Hoober Inc. and witness the advances in technology that has helped progress agriculture as a whole. While there, we learned that a huge event that allowed for such a jump in technology for farming was the publics authorization to use satellites for GPS. This allowed for automatic steering, drones, and a lot of other precision ag advancements to come along, making farming much more economical, timely, environmentally friendly and efficient. It was really interesting to see how production agriculture has changed throughout the years as technology advanced. Hoober sells new and used equipment so we were able to witness how tractors and combines progressed. Another service Hoober provides is upgrading old equipment to practically brand new, up-to-date machinery. They basically take the “bones” of a piece of equipment and modify, update and upgrade the systems and mechanics of it – this is often more economical than outright buying a brand new piece of machinery. I could really tell that Hoober’s was in business for the right reasons and to really help their customers. It was great to see such an honorable business model.
This past Saturday I was able to take a fascinating field trip to Hoobers with my Agricultural Class. It started with learning a little history about Hoobers and what precision ag really entails. We learned that the sprayer is one of their most promote and popular precision ag pieces sold. Speaking of the sprayer many of students were lucky enough to operate the piece of equipment including myself. While precision ag is a part of agriculture that will only get larger it does bring challenging aspects to the table such as data management and keeping up with all the new advancements in technology.
My favorite part of the trip was actually getting to see drones in action and learning about all the new advancements and ways to use drones in agriculture. It was interesting to hear that a license is actually required to operate these drones.
I believe precision ag will continue to get larger and advance. I also believe it will create many available careers in the future. Hoobers was overall a great experience and showed me a part of agricultural I did not realize was getting so large and in demand for the increasing population.
Although I was not able to attend the field trip to Hoober’s for various reasons, I was able to do some research and get some feedback from my friends. Hoober’s offers a wide variety of services and technology in precision agriculture, from their UpTime Service to drones and combines. They have come a long way since the 1940’s when they began. They are able to help many more people, as they have locations in Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia. This allows for a lot more and better agricultural production. Their most popular piece of equipment are the sprayers and planters. These have huge value as they are very important for agriculture and “feeding the world.” But after hearing about riding tractors, I can’t help but think that’s the best of them all, as I’ve been doing that since I was little. I think it is important to realize that these machines aren’t only something that has utility, but something that can be of sentimental value and great fun, whether that’s enjoying being outside operating a machine, or being pulled by a tractor while sitting in a wagon full of hay. From this I think there can be a lot learned in a fun and purposeful manner.