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App to expand University of Kentucky beef resources and connect farmers

LEXINGTON, Kentucky (March 3, 2022) — University of Kentucky Beef Specialists College of Agriculture, Food and Environment and the University of Tennessee created a mobile app called X10D to modernize how farmers and universities share information.

“It’s pronounced ‘extend’ because it electronically extends what we do for farmers,” said Les Anderson, a bovine extension specialist and professor in the UK. “We have an incredible amount of information thanks to the Cooperative extension service and sometimes it’s not that easy to find, so we wanted to make it easier for people to find what they need on their phone; they don’t want to be sitting in front of the computer trying to figure it out at 10 p.m.

Anderson describes the app as an information hub for livestock producers to manage, connect and learn about the things that matter to their businesses. UT beef specialist Justin Rhinehart partnered with Anderson to develop X10D.

“Growers will be able to manage their operations data in one place,” Anderson said. “It will allow them to make data-driven decisions; nothing a producer can do has a greater impact on revenue and profits than using data to make decisions. »

All users in a county will be connected to each other via a bulletin board. They can network and communicate on topics related to the beef industry, items for sale and production practices. The learning component will allow users to bypass popular search engines and find unbiased educational content on the app. Users can choose to receive regular notifications on current beef production educational content.

“We created X10D to modernize the beef industry’s connection to information,” Anderson said. “X10D connects users to their peers and to the most trusted source of unbiased information: the cooperative extension service. It also connects other users to their businesses. The X10D platform is simple, easy, convenient and enables daily production data collection from any device. Most recordings can be captured in less than 10 button presses and 30 seconds. Reports can be generated by pressing four buttons and in less than 20 seconds.

Brandon Sears, UK Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Officer in Madison County, participated in the testing phase. He believes the app will help him interact more meaningfully with his customers.

“We will be able to interact with producers wherever they are,” he said. “In turn, beef cattle producers can share information with us about their operations or any challenges they may have. X10D will help us develop a network of local farmers for idea sharing and problem solving. It’s a win-win. »

Anderson said the app received funding from the Kentucky Agricultural Development Board and began beta testing in October 2021. About 50 counties in Kentucky have financially supported X10D. Some counties have already paid for subscriptions, so cattle producers should contact their local county officer to find out before subscribing. Single-user subscriptions cost $20 a year, with all proceeds going to the UK Department of Animal and Food Science to support beef extension programs.

For more information, visit https://x10d.org/. The application is available on Apple and Android platforms. Other partners include the Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association, the Kentucky Beef Network and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture.