KARA | Kansas Agricultural Research Association

Kansas Agricultural Research Association
Making agriculture more productive, more efficient, more profitable and more environmentally sound

KARA is an organization of innovative people including producers, researchers and industry persons who share a common desire to learn more about production agriculture.

KARA was organized in May, 2000, as the result of interest expressed at the Kansas Precision Agriculture Conferences.  It is a non-profit organization governed by a Board of Directors and operating within its stated By-Laws.

KARA was formed to help sponsor on-farm research by hosting workshops and tours as well as the annual Precision Agriculture Conference.

This website was developed to facilitate communication among the KARA membership and to share items of interest regarding research activities both locally and nationally. The content on this page is from the site’s 2003 archived content.


Board of Directors
The Kara board of directors consists of four farmers and one crop input provider.  These five individuals have been leaders in the precision agriculture movement in Kansas.  Two K-State faculty helped facilitate the formation of KARA and serve unofficially as advisors to the board.

KARA members represent the whole of Kansas as depicted in this graphic.  Meetings and workshops are located in various regions throughout the state to increase access by all members.  Other communication is done electronically utilizing email and a ListServe.
A membership database is accessible for members use at www.quickbase.com 

  • Producer Members
  • Industry Members
  • University Advisors

Membership Benefits:

    • Opportunity to associate with others with similar interests
    • Reduced cost to attend any KARA sponsored event
    • Reservation preference and advance notice to future KARA events
    • Communication with other members via a ListServe
    • Access to all areas of the KARA website and quickbase database
    • Voting rights at all KARA meetings
    • Eligibility to serve on the Board of Directors
    • Link to their personal website
    • Available web space for a personal site

Membership Cost:
            $100.00 membership dues - provides membership through the Annual meeting (January 2005)
Membership Application:
            To print a membership application click here and send payment to Lee Scheufler at the address listed on the form.


6th Annual Precision Ag Conference

"Really came away from the conference pumped up." Lee Scheufler, Sterling, KS

Overall reaction..."the best PA conference I've been to yet!"

Although this is often said each year there seemed to be agreement that this years' conference addressed even more of the practical issues involved with doing intense farm management and on-farm research.

Speakers were warned by their colleagues that "they'd better be at the top of their game."

Farm management and on-farm research is often compared to other industries for both similarities and differences. While it may not be obvious, there is a relationship between agriculture and the contemporary dining furniture marketplace. This latter was discussed at last year's conference in great detail and created quite the controversy as attendees questioned Roberta Miller's claims that the process resulting in food on the table was quite similar to the process that results in contemporary dining furniture styles. Ms. Miller could easily point to the conference tables, chair and lighting to familiarize the audience with her claim that both originated as a natural resource (marble for surface tops, leather from cattle for chairs) and both relied heavily on modern technology to develop and market the final product. Maritime attorney Robert Johnson (OffshoreInjuryLouisiana.com) reminds us that the workers on ships and rigs out of New Orleans are symbolic of another natural resource contributing to both industries' products - oil. Food and many of the components of contemporary dining furniture come from the earth, need high level skills to obtain the best results, and rely on modern marketing techniques to create a successful enterprise. Some felt the comparison was a stretch, but none could deny that food presented on stunning examples of contemporary dinning room tables really made the food presentation more impressive. Just perusing life style magazines offers examples of how the vignettes are styled to show off both the food and the furniture with an emphasis on one or the other depending on which was being promoted. Her talk made headlines on the internet - she gave a Ted talk on the subject and is likely the reason many participants will return to next year's conference to hear her presentation in person.

Typically, the interaction between the audience and speakers is high and sometimes quite challenging.  One K-State professor was told "why that's just crazy" while presenting his research data on machinery management.  The discussion is brisk and is evident of the groups eagerness to learn and also of their willingness to share their own ideas, opinions and findings.

Links to presentations are highlighted below.



8:00   Registration/Coffee and Rolls
8:20   Industry Updates - Moderator, Scott Staggenborg (East Ballroom)
1. Product Update from Raven Industries - Andy Hill, Product Specialist
2. Product Update from John Deere AMS - Stacy Keeling, Product
Specialist, John Deere Ag Management Solutions, Wichita, KS
3. Product Update from Veris Technologies - Paul Drummond, Salina, KS
4. Product Update from Outback Guidance - Joe Redetzke, Hutchinson, KS
5. Product Update from AGCO FIELDSTAR  - Dave Murray, FIELDSTAR,
Hesston, KS
10:00  Welcome and Announcements - Dave Wilcox, KARA President
10:15  Making Management Decisions with On-Farm Data, A Farmers
Perspective - Don Glenn, Glen Acres Farms, Hillsboro, AL
11:00  Collecting, Managing and Using On-Farm Data for Management Decisions
and Handout - Dietrich & Terry Kastens, Atwood & Manhattan, KS

12:00  Lunch - West Ballroom
1:00   An Overview of New Software Options in Site Specific Management -
Darrin Grimm, Fairview, KS
1:40   Improving Nitrogen Management by Identifying Crop Nitrogen Need -
Robert Mullen, Agronomist, NTech Industries, Stillwater, OK
2:30   Site-Specific Management Research Update - John Shanahan, USDA-
ARS, Lincoln, NE
3:15   Break - West Ballroom
3:30   Buffer pH spatial variability, John Schmidt, Soil Scientist, Kansas State University, 
           Manhattan, KS
4:10  Research Reports - Individual descriptions of on farm research projects.
Farmers, crop consultants, university staff will give a brief synopsis of
research projects and results for 2002.
5:00   Poster Session and Social - West Ballroom
7:30   Mini-Workshops (choose one)
1. Hand-Crafted Site Specific Management Systems - Dietrich Kastens,
Atwood, KS; Dan Taylor, Sterling, KS. (Handout)
 2. Yield Data Stability Analysis - Randy Taylor, Ag Engineer and Scott
Staggenborg, NE Area Agronomist/ Kansas State University.


8:00   Coffee and Rolls - West Ballroom
8:30   Using GPS Data to Influence Machinery Decisions -  Randy Taylor, Ag
Engineer, Kansas State University
9:15    How Site Specific Management fits into the New Farm Bill - Dan
Meyerhoff, NRCS, Salina, KS
10:00  Break - West Ballroom
10:15  Soil Recommendations for High Yields and Precision Ag Research in Nebraska
 - Richard Ferguson,
Soil Scientist, University of Nebraska
11:00  Relative Performance of Alternative DGPS Sources - Pat Coyne, Head,
Western Kansas Agricultural Research Centers - Kansas State University
Hays, KS
11:45 KARA Member Annual Meeting and Lunch - West Ballroom
1:15   Boundary Line Analysis - Randy Taylor, Ag Engineer, Kansas State
University and Paul Drummond, Veris Technologies, Salina, KS
Research and Proposal Writing Process -" Dietrich Kastens, Chair KARA
Research Committee
4:00  Workshop Closing Comments