Innovation has always been at the heart of farming. Dreaming, inventing, and experimenting with new tools, equipment, and products is what allows farmers to continue improving their operations. Our family of employees thrives on innovation too, which is why we developed the Practical Farm Research (PFR)® program. Today, Beck’s provides a truly comprehensive, innovative, and practical agronomic research program that helps farmers with decisions that can improve profitability. By evaluating hundreds of new management practices and inputs, we deliver unbiased agronomic data to help farmers make better decisions and increase profitability.
Each year, new technologies and management practices emerge, making it difficult for farmers to evaluate all the options. So, we do it for you. The research and agronomic results from the 500+ studies conducted across five states are then shared through our annual PFR book. In 2018 we included the results from our PFR Cooperators on-farm testing programs with Minnesota AgRevival, the University of Tennessee at Martin, and Murray State University in Kentucky. View prior PFR Books.
With over 400 pages of data and information in our PFR Book, we found that farmers were questioning where to begin and asking questions like "how do I know which product or practice to implement on my own acres?"
It was because of questions like this that the PFR Proven™ concept was developed in the fall of 2016. A product or practice is designated as PFR Proven if it has provided a positive yield increase during three or more years of testing and averages a positive return on investment (products only) during that time. While these products and practices have worked on our PFR acres, they should be considered a starting point on your own farm.
Throughout the year, we encounter questions regarding what’s happening in the field, the agronomic why, and do we have any PFR studies addressing this issue? Submit your questions by using #AskPFR on social media or emailing your questions directly. View previous #AskPFR videos here.
The 300 bushel barrier was first achieved in the early 90's at Beck's headquarters in Atlanta, IN. Since then, we've continued to test methods and strategies to increase yields in PFR. In the fall of 2016, Sonny Beck challenged the PFR team to raise 400 Bu./A. corn within the next five years. With this goal in mind, tile drainage, drip irrigation, and linear irrigation are all going to be used in this study to get the crop the appropriate amount of moisture and nutrition to the plant to hopefully get the plant what it needs, when it needs it.
Results from a single site are informative about the results of that year’s weather on that particular soil. Multi-location, multi-year data allows us to observe long-term trends and gain a much broader perspective.
Contact us. Many times, our best studies arise from the needs of customers. Interested in a particular management practice? Ask us. We can help determine the best approach.
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The Central Indiana Practical Farm Research (PFR) location is located at Beck’s Hybrids headquarters at 6767 E. 276th St. in Atlanta, IN. The Central Indiana PFR site features more than 220 acres dedicated to PFR and replicated plot research and is also home to Beck's annual Becknology™ Days.
On average, the Central Indiana PFR site conducts over 80 studies each year! Unique to this location is the 400 Bushel Attempt. This study is equipped with tile drainage to keep water off the field early, linear irrigation to get water to the plants during key times such as pollination and even drip irrigation to spoon feed necessary nutrients to the plant within the season.
PFR Location Lead firstname.lastname@example.org 765-918-7008
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The Iowa Practical Farm Research location is located at 11250 Federal Ave. in Colfax, IA with 78 acres dedicated to replicated PFR plot research.
Because this location is the furthest west of all our PFR sites, we encounter issues here that our less prominent at our other PFR sites. These issues include greater Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS) in our soybeans and both the perks and challenges of soils with higher organic matter.
PFR Operations Manager email@example.com
Central Illinois PFR
El Paso, IL
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The Central Illinois Practical Farm Research location is located at 90 N. Fayette St. in El Paso, IL. This location has over 80 acres dedicated to PFR replicated plot research. In addition to PFR, this facility also has staff and space dedicated to seed processing and distribution.
Formerly at Downs, IL our Central Illinois PFR site moved to El Paso in Illinois in early 2018.
PFR Location Lead firstname.lastname@example.org 309-224-9320
Southern Illinois PFR
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The Southern Illinois Practical Farm Research location is located near the cross at 2100 Bourgeois Dr. Effingham, IL. This location has 100 acres dedicated to PFR studies. In addition to PFR, this facility has a distribution warehouse.
This location has a total of 10 acres focused on water management practices. Within these water management studies, we are testing things such as tile spacing and depth, drip irrigation, and both manual and sensor based sub-irrigation.
Jonathan Perkins, CCA
PFR Location Lead email@example.com 217-690-0509
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The Kentucky Practical Farm Research location was established for customers in southern Indiana, southern Illinois, Kentucky and Tennessee. This site located at 5741 Airline Rd. Henderson, KY has 160 acres dedicated to PFR replicated plot studies. In addition to PFR, this facility has a distribution warehouse and provides additional agronomic support to customers.
This location is our southernmost site and allows for research in later maturing soybeans as well as longer season hybrids during the summer months. During winter months, this site puts out the greatest amount of wheat plots as there are more wheat acres located in this part of the country.
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The Ohio Practical Farm Research site is located near the Farm Science Review, along I-70 and U.S. 40 (720 U.S. 40 NE London, OH). This location has approximately 135 acres dedicated to replicated PFR plot research. In addition to PFR, this facility also has a distribution warehouse.
Unique to this location is collaborative research with The Ohio State University. Approximately 80 acres are dedicated to this collaborative effort. In addition, a long-term tile spacing study has been implemented in which PFR collects data while the USDA-ARS and Ohio State University Extension work to study water quality through the Field to Faucet Initiative.
PFR Location Lead firstname.lastname@example.org 614-335-4068