Innovation and the use of innovative technologies is helping to improve sustainability, productivity, and resilience on farm businesses in Northern Ireland. This section will highlight current and upcoming innovative technologies utilised by CAFRE, both on their farms and their technology demonstration farms.
CAFRE technology demonstration farmer, Richard Kane uses GPS soil sampling and targeted lime application to manage soil pH on his arable farm. Richard can measure the variability of soil pH in his fields and create treatment zones which require different rates of lime to bring the soil pH back to it recommended levels.
At CAFRE we strive to produce a high quality forage crop which is used to feed the various livestock enterprises on the CAFRE farm. Grass production is managed to maximise efficient use of nutrients, focusing on the demand from the livestock, whilst ensuring soil health is maintained and crop potential is met.
Tractors and implements such as fertiliser applicators and slurry spreading equipment are ISOBUS ready at CAFRE. Having ISOBUS enable equipment allows CAFRE to take advantage of innovations such as field guidance, data recording and implement control, without the need for complex multi screen in-tractor setups.
CAFRE use an affordable, entry level GPS guidance system to assist the tractor operator to accurately apply product during field operations. Jobs such as spraying for weed control or spreading fertilises are made easier and treatments can be applied in a sustainable and more productive manner.