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Broadband Accessibility and Adoption for Missouri’s Agricultural Community

MoBroadbandNow has conducted several surveys and focus groups to hear from the agriculture and agribusiness communities on broadband needs. Survey responses are being used to assist MoBroadbandNow and private providers to expand and enhance broadband accessibility in many underserved and unserved communities across the state.  Review survey results and focus group findings below:

Agriculture Broadband in the News

University of Missouri’s Agricultural Broadband Study

In October 2011, the  University of Missouri-Columbia published a study focused on the benefits of broadband access for Missouri farms and agribusiness.  Read the study:

Read the news release on the University of Missouri-Columbia’s study “The Benefits of Expanded Broadband for Missouri Farms and Agribusiness

Broadband in Missouri

  • Among the 97.8 percent of Missourians with broadband accessibility, approximately 71 percent are active subscribers.
  • The adoption gap is widest among rural to non-rural adopters. 100 percent of non-rural or urban Missiourians have access to broadband, and 82 percent of those with access are adopters. While, 92.5 percent of rural Missourians have broadband access, with only 63 percent adopting the technology; an adoption gap of nearly 20 percent.
  • The majority of Missouri farms, ranches, production centers and processing operations are located in low density areas that include unserved or underserved broadband communities.  Unserved means no broadband provider is available and underserved means only one broadband provider is available.
  • Governor Jeremiah (Jay) Nixon established MoBroadbandNow, a public-private initiative, with the goal of providing broadband accessibility to at least 95 percent of Missourians by the end of 2014.

Agriculture in Missouri

  • Missouri is a leader in agriculture and agribusiness with over $8.3 billion in cash receipts for 2010.
  • Missouri has the second highest number of farms in the nation with over 100,000 individual farms and nearly 30 million acres.
  • Among Missouri’s livestock inventory the state holds over four million head of cattle, three million head of hogs and 30 million poultry and produces over 175 million gallons of milk.
  • Among Missouri’s crop inventory, the state produces over 375 million bushels of corn, 200 million bushels of soybeans and 32 million pounds of apples.

Broadband Accessibility for Missouri’s Farmers

  • Expanding and enhancing broadband accessibility, adoption, affordability, choice, speed and usage has the potential to transform Missouri.
  • Broadband allows Missouri to compete globally, create jobs, stimulate the economy, promote investment, increase efficiency and improve the quality-of-life.
  • Missouri’s agricultural industry will have a direct benefit from greater broadband availability and better technology including:
    • marketing and selling products directly to consumers
    • trading commodities in “real-time”
    • accessing market information
    • purchasing equipment and supplies
    • managing inventory and storing data
    • monitoring weather and applications
    • reducing energy and water consumption

      Missouri’s agricultural industry will benefit directly from greater broadband availability and better technology, which will allow direct marketing to consumers, real time access to market information and efficient management of supplies and data, among other benefits.