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June Edition 2021

Trace Genomics – Creating actionable insights by integrating the latest innovations in soil science, genomics, and machine learning to advance agriculture


Today, thanks to the application of artificial intelligence and machine learning (ML), agriculture can count on a wider variety of data and analytics tools. These data are provided by many different types of sensors that allow a better understanding of the environment (crops, weather conditions, soil) and the agricultural operations (machine data). By feeding machine learning systems with the collected data, farm management can be supported with real-time recommendations elaborated via artificial intelligence. Soil management can use ML to predict and identify agricultural soil properties like composition, drying, temperature, and moisture. This approach, based on computational analysis, offers a low cost and less time-consuming solution. The levels of soil temperature and drying offer important information about climate change effects on a region. Machine learning regression models have been used by a team of Greek scientists for the prediction of soil organic carbon, moisture content, and total nitrogen.

Trace Genomics is one such company that has developed the first analytics engine that learns as it maps the living soil using advanced AI and machine learning technologies. Founded in 2015 to serve the farming community, Trace Genomics helps agronomists and growers maximize the value of every acre. The company is building the largest, most actionable body of soil intelligence, making thousands of agronomists and growers experts on what’s underground. Working collaboratively across the agriculture ecosystem, the company helps growers optimize costs, manage risk and protect their soil as a capital asset. Headquartered in Silicon Valley, Trace Genomics has raised $22.5 million in financing.

Trace Genomics analyzes the soil’s biology by applying proprietary soil DNA extraction and sequencing to index and quantify millions of microbes in your soil. By harnessing machine learning, the company conducts high-speed, cost-efficient data analysis to compare against a large and growing set of soil data. It combines your soil biological data with your soil chemical data and surface tailored insights to help you take action. Its soil science experts work with you to enable data-driven, evidence-based recommendations so you can decide the best action to take on your growers’ fields.

Why Trace Genomics

Help growers optimize time and money: The soil microbiome is a key driver in planting and management decisions. With Trace, you have the ability to identify and measure the pathogen populations in the soil, allowing you to quantify the risk of disease and take the appropriate management action. Use Trace’s advanced soil microbiology and chemistry analysis, expert agronomy support and data science to support R&D teams in the development of biological products.

Solve the unsolvable mysteries in the grower’s fields: Trace’s technology measures soil microbes responsible for nutrient cycling functions, soil pathogens and soil chemistry to provide you with a never before seen analysis of the soil. The company’s platform gives you answers to your most pressing questions in regards to soil productivity, pathogen pressure and soil health. Equip your agronomists with Trace’s insights to gain deep knowledge of their growers’ fields and bring more contexts to their recommendations.

Leverage Trace’s soil experts to make actionable recommendations: Work one-on-one with its expert Agronomic Support Team to integrate other important data layers, interpret insights and generate custom reports so your growers can take action on their fields. Utilize innovative technology to deliver new value to your customers with Trace’s results and recommendations.

The Passionate Leader

Dan Vradenburg is the Chief Executive Officer of Trace Genomics. He leads the development of strategies and operating plans that enable Trace Genomics to achieve its mission, goals and objectives by inspiring team management, staff, customers and investors, while partnering with the board of directors.

His previous roles included a rewarding 37-year career with Wilbur-Ellis, serving as President for the company’s Agribusiness Division for his last 16 years there. In his time there, he oversaw more than 60 acquisitions and sponsored the development of Wilbur-Ellis’ seed technologies business, as well as its farm decision-making software platform AgVerdict.

Mr. Vradenburg earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Agribusiness from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville and completed the Stanford University Business School Executive Program.

“We turn your soil samples into meaningful insights, so you can take action, with our data-driven, evidence-based recommendations.”