Technotill: A Quiet Revolution
Invented by Walter and Betty Schoenhofer in 1986
From Betty Schoenhofer, owner of Technotill:
Walter and I established this small family-owned business to produce and market the Technotill Seeding System, developed from research and development on our own farm near Wetaskiwin, Alberta. We were looking for a low cost, durable system that would maximize germination in a variety of soil types and moisture conditions, and reduce soil disturbance during the seeding operation.
The result is our revolutionary Technotill Seeding System.
We incorporated in 1996 and began marketing the Technotill Seeding System by participating in agricultural trade shows and zero till conferences. Word of mouth from many satisfied customers has been a big factor in our continuing growth.
Initially, our sales were in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Marketing began in the United States in 2002 in North Dakota and Montana.
The development of the Technotill Seeding System has been assisted by consultation with the Alberta Research Council; evaluation by the Agricultural Technology (AgTech) Centre in Lethbridge, Alberta and the Prairie Agricultural Machinery Institute (PAMI) at Humboldt, Saskatchewan; and field trials by the Manitoba Zero Tillage Research Association.
Most of all, feedback from farmers who use Technotill has helped us to improve our system by making it more durable and easier to install. It is farmers who have demonstrated that Technotill works, even in extreme wet or dry conditions in many soil types. In recent years, an increasing number of farmers have successfully direct seeded into sod.
Our priority now is to work with independent researchers to verify customers’ field experience.
In October 2004, Walter died suddenly. With the help of our son Colin, we are continuing to operate Technotill, using the mission that Walter believed in.
OUR MISSION: to help farmers achieve the best possible germination of their crops while conserving the soil. We support this mission by providing a unique seeding system, hands-on service, and current, practical information about zero tillage seeding.