Grain in the bin doesn’t always equate to money in a farmer’s pocket.
Just ask Kyle Folk.
Kyle’s parents operate the family farm in rural Saskatchewan and years ago experienced a loss due to spoiled grain. They were unable to fill an order and, therefore, didn’t receive their payment for countless hours spent seeding and harvesting their crop.
“At the time, I was ignorant to the fact that grain could spoil. I just didn’t know,” Kyle explained. “Once I realized this, I was totally blown away that this was something that farmers experienced and had to accept.”
“They go through the effort all year playing the elements and the risks and so many uncontrollable factors and they finally get it in the bin. And to know that it could still go to waste was so frustrating.”
Kyle was inspired to found IntraGrain Technologies Inc, which has designed, developed and manufactured technology to prevent this type of loss. Canada has some of the best storage practices anywhere in the world, but the technology developed by IntraGrain takes it up another level.
BIN-SENSE® is the first of its kind in the world. This technology is a wireless grain storage monitoring system that conveniently monitors stored grain and eliminates the risk of spoilage by alerting farmers to a change in temperature and/or moisture.
Over the past decade, farming has advanced exponentially thanks to technological innovation. From crop and irrigation monitoring to weather applications on wireless devices to GPS systems in various equipment, farming has gone new-age. BIN-SENSE® is another tool to advance agriculture.
“In time, every bin will be monitored,” said Kyle, who had initially focussed on selling in Canada, but has now started supplying a number of other countries.
“It was a great moment for everyone when we heard IntraGrain’s name called because everyone plays a role in what we do,” Kyle said.
“But I think farmers are the true entrepreneurs in Saskatchewan. We’re grateful to be recognized for what we do – and even more so we are proud to provide a tool for farmers to help them work a little more efficiently. Without farmers, what would we have?”
This year, 82 ABEX nominations were received. From there, the field was narrowed to 50 finalists. At the event, 11 Saskatchewan businesses were named the winners of these business excellence awards.
“By striving for excellence, these winners personify business success in Saskatchewan,” the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce says in a new release about this year’s awards.
The ABEX award followed an honour Kyle received just two days prior at the EY Prairie Regional Entrepreneur Awards in Calgary where he was recognized as the top manufacturer. EY says the “Entrepreneur of the Year winners and finalists represent the world’s most influential, innovative and exclusive network of entrepreneurs.” Those who win are “outstanding Canadians who have turned their unique business vision into successful reality.”