by Pat Christie, President of Conservis
At Conservis, we’ve entered a new era. Like an early morning sunrise bathes a field in light, a new day unfolds with the potential for something beautiful. Crops are sprouting from the earth and the promise of growth is within reach. The recently unveiled strategic joint acquisition of Conservis by two farm-focused visionaries is arguably one of the most unusual shifts in agriculture.
Back in 2018, we announced a partnership with Rabo AgriFinance where we co-developed technology to seamlessly – and nearly effortlessly – connect U.S. farmers’ real-time field and management data with financial results. Today, that technology empowers farmers to produce a loan renewal package that features everything a lender needs with the push of a button. It’s a win for the farmer, but it’s a win for the lender as well because the depth and accuracy of the farmer’s data reduces risk to the lender. This endeavor marked the beginning of our partnership with Rabobank, and we’ve just touched the surface.
Enter TELUS Agriculture, a global provider of innovative digital solutions serving the ag value chain to support better food outcomes. Together, the people behind this are committed to building a strong, sustainable business to help revolutionize the ag supply chain and Conservis is the client-focused connection to the farm. We’ve spent years listening and learning, and we’re every bit as committed to our clients today as when we started this journey over a decade ago.
A client-centric culture
I stand behind this acquisition 100% because I believe it’s the right decision for our clients. This is about two ambitious, passionate companies coming together to build long-term value which will benefit the entire ag supply chain. Our future hinges on the success of the family farmer and the corporate farmer, each with unique needs and challenges. Moving forward, we’ll keep those needs close to heart while expanding to solve problems that matter.
We believe farmers belong in a position of power. No one in ag is a stranger to the concept of buying at retail prices and selling at wholesale – farming is a tough business that requires real sweat and determination. We don’t just acknowledge this, but we’ve made it our purpose to simplify and streamline the producer’s world by imagining what could be. We’ve done this alongside growers in the field, not by creating another app from our offices in Silicon Valley. Our platform is the hub of our client’s data. We do not take this responsibility lightly which is why we ensure the grower maintains full ownership of their data and this will not change.
I’m a strong believer in earning trust one farmer at a time. Especially in today’s environment, trust has to be earned. Enforcing this by creating transparency around how we operate and what we believe is a solid starting ground.
Today, there is a significant amount of discomfort at the farm level that hasn’t been resolved. There are broken promises. Tech companies claiming they’ll solve challenges, but the farmer may not feel those claims have lived up to the promises. There are plenty of free solutions out there, but one has to ask, are they truly free? Free of financial cost sure, but what about the cost of data privacy? Where does the farmer’s data go? Will it potentially be used against them in the long term? “Free” doesn’t necessarily mean better.
Farmers are insightful individuals. They put a great deal of thought and research into understanding the motivation behind a company before they sign above any dotted line. From being Ag Data Transparent certified to showing up on farm when we say we will, our actions speak for themselves. Since day one, we’ve drawn a hard line in the dirt around the data privacy and security of our clients. Moving forward, we’re in alignment with both Rabobank and TELUS Agriculture on these values. Our clients come first, and we will continue to grow based on the needs of our clients and partners.
The future is bright
As I look forward, I’m excited by a sustainable, profitable and promising future for the grower. I see traceability taking center stage throughout the entire journey of the food that we all depend on. With that, I imagine more transparency in and around how our food originates and how it’s grown, and I see this being a win for growers and consumers alike.
I am proud to say that I believe this acquisition is taking place with farmers at the forefront, backed by a real desire to build a lasting business that revolutionizes the food and ag supply chain. In order to solve global challenges, there’s no one company that can do it all. But together with the power of partnerships and a global perspective, the future is bright.