In addition, mounting NIR instruments on forage harvesting equipment allows for the creation of yeild maps that reflect both the total tonnage and the yield of individual nutrients like starch and protein. If we could cross reference our soil maps with protein yield maps what could we learn?
Finally, what if we could segregate each truckload of silage or bale of hay depending on the nutrient qualities of that individual lot?
As the scale of individual farms continues to increase we may need to re-think some of our beliefs about how feedstuffs should be tested. Under the right circumstances on farm NIR may be a viable option. Like any tool, it will require a user with some basic knowledge of its capabilities and acceptance of its limitations.