Thursday 16 June 2016

Your Precision Agriculture Specialists - NZ Fieldays - Site J41

We’re knee deep into NZ National Fieldays week and you may want to pack an umbrella or come and visit the Agri Optics tent where you will find the team of precision agriculture experts and shelter from the occasional shower.

Their combined knowledge from world leading variable rate irrigation (VRI) research projects and practical experience helping farmers on a day to day basis with electromagnetic mapping, soil moisture measurement and VRI solutions means you could not find a more qualified team to answer your precision agriculture questions!

Your precision agriculture specialists on site J41
Agri Optics - NZ Fieldays
Introducing the guys (from the left):

Chris Smith has over 20 years’ experience in farming, both in NZ and the UK Chris boasts a wide range of skills covering all aspects of agricultural management. Chris is the winner of awards in the UK for improved production yields, reduced overheads and a range of environmental schemes and enterprises. He moved to NZ in 2007 from the UK to manage a mixed 600ha cropping farm in Canterbury until late 2012. Chris has experience in EM Soil Mapping, a range of variable rate application technologies and has worked with on farm computer systems for over 15 years. In the UK Chris was involved from the early stages with variable rate nutrient application from grid soil sampling, canopy imagery and yield mapping.

Stu Bradbury graduated from Massey University with a Bachelor of Engineering with Honours in 2005. While studying, Stu and classmate George Ricketts set up Farm Mapping. Following University they continued with GPS farm mapping, designing new dairy conversion farm layouts and constructing centre-pivot irrigators. The combination of mapping and irrigation led to the invention of Variable Rate Irrigation and in 2007 the guys set up Precision Irrigation. Stu has been involved in countless VRI research projects and offers VRI solution advice globally.

Paul Whitehead also graduated from Massey University with a Bachelor of Engineering with Honours in the same year as Stu. Through his study and on leaving university Paul worked as a design and service technician for John Whitehead Electrical. As Paul honed his mechanical and electrical skills engineering fertiliser spreading equipment amongst other projects his aptitude for problem-solving shone. This natural inclination for problem-solving has helped countless farmers in New Zealand and abroad. Paul doesn’t leave a stone un-turned in his quest to solve a problem, working under flood lights to make sure he doesn’t drive out the farm gate until your variable rate irrigation system is working just perfect.

Nick Evans graduated from Lincoln University in 2013 with a Bachelor of Commerce in Agriculture. He then went on to complete a Master of Management in Agribusiness in 2015. During his time at university Nick sought out varied practical work experiences ranging from dairy farming on the West Coast to a wheat harvest in Victoria, Australia. Combining these experiences with university learning has built a solid foundation of agricultural knowledge. During the course of his Masters Nick was exposed to Precision Ag and found it to be a fascinating area of agriculture that had great potential.

Combined the team are your precision agriculture specialists (if you didn’t already notice the signage). Chris and Nick hail from Agri Optics based in Methven, Canterbury. And Stu and Paul are your Agri Optics North Island counterparts. If you don't happen to be heading to the field days this year and would like more information visit

Today's post come from those back in the office at

Site J41 in all its glory!