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Streamlined sampling wins over Craig

July 16, 2018

Long-time APAL customer Craig Davis uses soil and plant testing, along with grain analysis, for his agronomy clients in South Australia’s Mid North and Yorke Peninsula.

“Soil, plant and grain testing play an important part in my clients’ decision-making, so it’s important to use a laboratory I trust,” he says.

Craig says he uses the information to help growers make key decisions on farm, including:
• Matching fertiliser applications to crop requirements,
• Managing soil acidity or alkalinity, and
• Planning a capital investment such as soil amelioration.

“The analysis often helps justify the expense of soil improvement activities or helps find a way to reduce costs,” he says.
Craig Davis

Private agronomist

Grains and livestock

Mid-North and Yorke Peninsula, South Australia

He says his growers’ return on investment from testing is very strong.

“In a lot of cases, especially when we do deep nitrogen testing, we find we can reduce the fertiliser requirements because there is more nitrogen there than the grower had realised,” he says.

“Soil testing gives us a higher confidence in hitting yield targets while minimising the fertiliser bill.”

Craig says he chooses APAL because of his trust in the results and the ease of submitting samples.

“The new Farm2Lab app really streamlines the process,” he says.

“I can just go out into the field and scan the sample bag barcode and it will record the GPS coordinates of the sample. I then post the bag into APAL, and when the results come back I can see exactly where each sample came from.

“The benefit of this is I can go and take samples from the exact same spot over the course of a year, or multiple years, and take soil samples, plant samples, and grain samples from the same location.

“This gives me a really clear understanding of what is going on in both the soil and the plant.”

Craig says he can also use the geolocation service by importing a sampling map which segregates paddocks by soil type.

He says he will continue to choose APAL for his clients.

“APAL are good value, their sample turnaround is good, their system is efficient. Also, because they’re based in Adelaide, I can get good service, and I’m supporting locals, which always feels great,” he says.