Owners: Mike and his Uncle Don
Location: Maine, USA
Type of Operation: Barley, oats, lucerne, and rape for seed
Year We Visited Mike and Don: 2012, as part of a USA Farm Study Tour
Mike has a 400 ha property with barley, oats, lucerne, and rape for seed. Rapeseed oil, aka Canola, usually yields 4.5 t/ha. Mike was doing half of that before his consultant Alan Perry introduced him to the Albrecht-Kinsey method. “The land has been farmed pretty hard over the last 50 years, with crop yields declining”. Under Alan’s guidance Mike tried the Albrecht-Kinsey way of fertilising the soil. The first thing he noticed was the weight, quality numbers, and storage ability all improved. At a time when the number of potato buyers is decreasing and costs of growing are increasing, this was a welcome turnaround.
Mike’s uncle, Don was also experiencing declining yields and started on the Albrecht-Kinsey programme, getting an improvement in quality, quantity and a lower per unit cost, all adding up to a 30% profitability gain.
The TEC of the soils here is 5-11 and lime comes from Canada. With copper mine nearby, soils in this area are naturally high in copper, and the best yields also have high manganese. The family have also noted an extra 2 t/ha gain in yield by using biological additives.
Don showed us a paddock of oats he was growing. “Best I have grown for a while. This is how we used to grow grain. The (other) grain in this county is junk”. Don’s field of 28 ha of oats was set to produce 2.7 t, with even better improvement to come next year.