INTIME, INC., a provider of precision farming services, has waived its initial $500 technical services fee for new and existing customers on acres enrolled before Jan. 1, 2005.

InTime, Inc., headquartered in Cleveland, Miss., uses a combination of geospatial technologies to convert real-time aerial imagery of agricultural crops into digital scout maps. InTime scout maps depict plant-health variability within a field and have been proven useful in identifying crop variability due to soil type, disease, soil acidity, soil compaction, insect pressure, fertilizers, irrigation practices, crop cutout, herbicide misuse and genetic varieties.

Using a process patented by InTime, the digital maps are converted to variable-rate prescriptions that can be used by variable rate-equipped aerial and ground applicators to apply chemicals only where they're needed, reducing chemical costs and producing more uniform and healthy crops.

InTime products are supported by a comprehensive training and support program to insure quality service for customers. InTime professionals help their customers work through the learning curve of installing and using advanced equipment.

“By charging a service fee, we're able to cover the cost of training consultants and growers during the growing season,” said Kelly Dupont, director of sales and marketing for InTime. “That's why we're encouraging customers to enroll their crops early so we can get them up and running before the season starts. In doing so, they can save $500.”

Although InTime users can create scout or prescription maps by simply pressing a few buttons on their computer keyboards, other processes require more time and resources to initiate and maintain, including the installation and support of variable-rate components like GPS and flow control devices, and modification and verification of client-provided field boundaries.

InTime offers its customers support 12 hours a day, six days a week, with all its products and services throughout the growing season.

“Our technicians spend a lot of time testing and adjusting field boundaries to insure proper alignment, and with basic computer tasks associated with data collection, storage and transfer,” Dupont said. “The optimal time to train our customers is during the winter, which is why we've decided to waive this fee for customers who sign up before Jan. 1, 2005.”

In just two years, InTime has grown by 400 percent to accommodate many new crops, spanning most of the southern United States. Cotton, corn, soybeans and rice headline a growing list of crops that benefit from InTime products.

“More and more producers are discovering the practicality and economic returns that variable-rate prescriptions offer, and regarding the way our product is used, we're learning as much or more from the producers as we have from scientific research,” said Dupont.

Mississippi Delta crop consultant Joe Townsend said prior to variable-rate application, cotton defoliation was nearly always a two-shot job. The second application was necessary because applying enough defoliants and harvest aids in one shot is cost-prohibitive for most growers trying to defoliate and open all the bolls on the rankest areas of the field.

“By using InTime variable-rate prescriptions, producers can now afford to apply enough product on the rankest area of the field, while applying less product in other areas of the field, ultimately doing a better job of defoliating,” said Townsend.

For more information, go to www.gointime.com on the Interent or contact Kelly Dupont at 866-843-0235.