It turns out that there is more to down on agricultural gaming than Farmville.
Over the weekend, the Farming Simulator World Championship was held. It was a big deal in the esports world with a 100,000 euro price ($113,000 US).
According to The Gamer and Farming Simulator’s owner-developer, players first choose hundreds of pieces of farm equipment. Teams then go to work making their farms and vineyards productive.
The software that spawned the league dates back more than a decade and has become increasingly sophisticated. Farming Simulator allows players to work together, a feature that cleared the way for teams.
One of the sponsors of the championship and a rising star in the competition is Delaware-based Corteva, the combined ag businesses of DuPont and Dow. You don’t hear much out of Corteva in this part of the world. It operates worldwide and has most of its operations in the Midwest U.S.
Corteva sponsors a team that went into the championships as a finalist but could not snare the top prize.
That honor went to the team from Trelleborg, a Swedish company that, among other things, manufactures tires for farm tractors and heavy equipment. Another contender was Valtra, a Finnish tractor-maker, with a U.S. owner.
Corteva, a seed, and agrichemical company, doesn’t build tractors or tires.
However, it is no stranger to the software world. Corteva’s San Francisco-based Granular business offers software aimed at making farms more productive and profitable.
Corteva also notes on its website that sponsoring a league is another way to get more young people interested in farming. After all, Farming Simulator has millions of players around the world.
Meanwhile, in the U.S., the average age of American farmers has risen to 57 and a half, according to the Department of Agriculture.
Signs are emerging that immigrants and younger people are willing to take the plunge. Getting gamers interested in the real thing represents a modest bet that could pay off for companies like Corteva.
Enjoy your evening. Our newsletter returns tomorrow. – Doug Rainey, chief content officer.