Farmers take tech to new heights

Farmers take tech to new heights

Dairy farmers wave high-tech wands near ear tags to keep track of their cows’ health. Almond growers fly drones over the orchards to check on tree vigor.

And out on the West Side, bean growers use social media to urge young mothers to buy their products.

These methods and more were discussed at a gathering last week in Hilmar, put on by a Salinas-based company called AgTech Insight and several partners.

Experts talked about systems that track fertilizer and pesticide use on the farm and sanitation measures in processing plants. Such information can be conveyed to consumers curious about the sources of their food.

“You’re making a good-faith effort to monitor those things, and it’s marketable, trust me,” said Jonathan Hoff, chief executive officer at Monte Vista Farming Co., which grows and processes almonds east of Denair.