Episode 15 - Interview with Kerwin Bradley CPO of Black Gold Farms

Episode 15 - Interview with Kerwin Bradley CPO of Black Gold Farms

Hey everyone, welcome back to Ag Uncensored! This is Nathan Faleide, your host. Today, I had the pleasure of talking with Kerwin Bradley from Black Gold Farms. We had planned to do this live at the Cultivate Conference in Fargo, but doing it online was much easier and laid back.

Kerwin shared his fascinating journey in agriculture, from growing up on a wheat farm in Montana to working at Walt Disney World, and eventually becoming the Chief Production Officer at Black Gold Farms. We dived deep into the complexities of potato farming and the unique challenges and innovations in the industry. Here are some key takeaways from our conversation:

Key Takeaways:
  1. Potato Production Complexity (08:31.822)
  • Potato farming is highly intensive and requires meticulous care due to the crop’s perishability and susceptibility to diseases and pests. Kerwin emphasized that everything wants to eat a potato, making it one of the most challenging crops to grow.
Importance of Sustainability and Innovation (12:18.894)
  • Sustainability in potato farming is multifaceted. It involves not just reducing inputs but also ensuring the quality and yield are maintained. Innovations like biologicals and precision farming technologies are explored, but their adoption is often limited by practicality and measurable impact.
Challenges with Technology Implementation (41:25.07)
  • Deploying new technologies on the farm is challenging due to the need for additional bandwidth and specialized personnel. Kerwin highlighted the difficulty in justifying the cost and measuring the value of new tech, making it crucial for providers to offer easy-to-use and low-cost solutions initially.
Sustainability and Regenerative Agriculture (53:58.713)
  • Collaboration with land partners and adopting regenerative agriculture practices can significantly improve sustainability scores. However, this requires a shift from a “do no harm” approach to proactive collaboration across crop rotations and input management.
Future of Ag Tech and Collaboration (01:09:57.817)
  • The future of agriculture lies in more robust collaboration and understanding between producers and technology providers. Kerwin stressed the need for solutions that address real problems in a practical and efficient manner, enabling farmers to maintain productivity while meeting sustainability goals.

Thanks for tuning in, and I hope you found this episode insightful. Don't forget to like, subscribe, and share Ag Uncensored with your friends. Stay tuned for more episodes where we dive into the real-world challenges and innovations in agriculture. See you next time!

Talking AgTech with host Nathan Faleide

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