Miller Research is assisted by four full-time employees and six part-time employees with diverse backgrounds in farming, machine and equipment design, operation, and maintenance, crop production, sample collection, data assimilation, harvesting and shipping procedures, and record keeping.
All personnel associated with our research activities are well-qualified to supply contract sponsors with the data needed for quality research trials. Standard Operating Procedures are in place for research activities and maintenance tasks. The staff has experience in crop production in commercial farming as well as in research activities.
We have conducted trials for 120 companies and organizations and performed cooperative research with 4 different land-grant universities. We regularly received funding from the Idaho Potato Commission and Snake River Sugar to conduct research projects of interest to crop producers.
Miller Research owns 970 acres of farmland where research is managed. This eliminates problems associated with the successful control and completion of field studies. Land ownership and seasoned, trained staff allows us to control all facets of crop production and to maintain precise records. Our research plots are monitored regularly, as we are less than 15 minutes from any site. Our office complex and modern manufacturing shop is well-suited for both business and research. We are able to accommodate face-to-face training and field tours.
We have developed the Miller Research small plot sprayer which has helped to improve product application uniformity and allow for independent application of test substance in different experimental replications. A spray boom is mounted on a small tractor equipped with a hydrostatic drive. The hydrostatic drive allows for us to drive at application speed from the beginning to the end of each plot. Twelve separate stainless steel tanks can be mounted on the sprayer. Test products used for spraying are placed in the tanks and mixed by placing a Teflon-coated laboratory magnet inside the tank. A second magnet is located under the tank and is turned with a hydraulic motor. The rotation of the bottom magnet causes the magnet inside the tank to turn allowing for constant agitation of the test products during application. The spray tanks are pressurized with compressed air and each tank is individually pressurized and protected with one-way valves to prevent intermixing of tank products. We have also designed equipment that allows us to apply test chemicals with the same technology during planting operations for many crops. Our application technologies allows us to apply test products as in-furrow, banded and broadcast applications through ground, simulated aerial and chemigation methods all in the same study.
Miller Research has developed a method to simulate center pivot chemigation, fertigation and irrigation in small, replicated plots. We worked with Senninger Irrigation engineers to develop a system that would allow us to deliver a uniform water pattern in a 24 x 40 foot area. This system allows us to evaluate the efficacy and residue of products applied through an irrigation system. The system puts on water at a rate similar to a 900 gallon/minute pivot operating at 100% (about 0.13 inches of water in 12 minutes).
We designed a tractor-mounted soil probe for dissipation studies. Our soil probe has more functionality than the Gidding or Concord samplers and uses the same type of soil probe- liners. Our probe moves laterally 36 inches from one side to the other. A platform is mounted on the probe for the purpose of carrying workers and supplies as the tractor drives over the plot. This eliminates any foot traffic on the plot surface area. The tractor mounted probe can place 2900 pounds of pressure to collect soil cores. A soil casing probe is used to excavate and remove the top six inches of the soil, and prevent surface soil from contaminating deeper soil cores. A second soil core can then be taken to whatever depth is specified by the sponsor. In recent dissipation trials we have collected soil to a depth of 48 inches. This probe has allowed us to provide quality soil cores for our clients.
Before conducting our first foliar dislodgeable residue study we recognized that there were serious inadequacies in the only leaf punch tool available. Protocols were being written to work around these mechanical problems. In concert with Christiansen Machine Co., we developed a new prototype leaf punch that could be used without those associated problems. The current production model punch has allowed researchers to conduct dislodgeable studies without compromising accuracy because of mechanical difficulties in collecting the leaf samples.
We are invited speakers, not only to Idaho growers, but to growers, industry and university entities throughout the United States and Canada. Our experience, land ownership, physical facilities and equipment manufacturing capabilities allow us to provide quality, repeatable research for our clients.
The main crops for our research are potatoes, sugar beets, small grains, dry bean, and corn.
Crop Injury Claims
Another service, in addition to research, is investigation and validation of damage claims relating to agricultural crops. Without resolution, this sometimes leads to serving as expert witnesses.
Clients, Cooperators, and Quality Assurance
Quality assurance inspections have found us in compliance with required standards. The following have performed quality assurance audits:
- Abbot Laboratories
- American Cyanamid – Stuart M. Mertz
- Aventis – Regina Haynes (2001)
- Barbara Haley (ISK Biotech, ISK Biosciences) private consultant
- Battelle- Charles D. Lawrie (1999)
- Bayer Ag Corp.
- Bayer CropScience- Paul Toll (2007)
- Ciba Geigy Corporation – Roydera Hackworth (1991) and Barbara North (1994)
- Compliance Services International
- DowElanco – Deborah Haynes (1997)
- DuPont-Jeanine L. Stannis (1995) and Ada Harrison 1998
- Environmental Protection Agency – Randy Morris and Mark Lehr (1991), Mark Lehr (2005), and Harold Day (2010)
- Environmental Technologies Institute, Inc
- FMC-Michelle Kenny (1997)
- ISK Boisciences – Michael Peplouski (2001)
- Novartis – Thomas Gale, Jr. (2000)
- Pacific Rim Consulting – Deborah Garvin (1993, 1999)
- Pan Agricultural Laboratories
- Perspective Consulting – Renee Daniel (1997)
- Quality Concepts – Melissa G. Hussey (1997)
- Rhone-Poulenc Ag Company – Judy Spees (1996)
- Stewart Agricultural Research Services
- Swenson QA (1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1997)
- Syngenta – Kathleen M. Campbell (2003) and Teresa Cox (2006)
- The Carringers, Inc.- Henry Hagwood (2004, 2007)
- Valent USA – C. E. Moran (1997)
- Zeneca – T. A. Teal (1997)
Research has been conducted for or in conjunction with the following (many have changed names or companies have merged over our research tenure):
- Abbot Laboratories
- Advanced Microbial SolutionsActagro LLC
- Ag Concepts Corporation
- Agrimar Corporation
- Agriliance Corporation
- Agrevo USA Company
- Agro K
- Agtrol International
- Amalgamated Research Inc.
- American Cyanamid Company
- Arysta Lifesciences
- Auxein Corporation
- Aventis CropScience
- BASF Corporation
- Bayer Corporation
- Bayer CropScience
- Beta Seed Company
- Bio-Gro Inc.
- Buckman Laboratories
- Chevron Chemical Company
- Ciba Geigy
- CK Lifesciences
- Diamond Shamrock Company
- Dow Chemical Company
- Dow Agrosciences
- Elf Atochem North America, Inc.
- Eden Biosciences
- Exxon Chemical
- Fermenta Plant Protection Company
- FMC Corporation
- Gowan Company
- Griffin LLC
- Helena Chemical Company
- Hilleshog Seed Company
- Horizon Ag Company
- Hydro Agri North America, Inc.
- Idaho Sugar Beet Growers Association
- Integrated Biological Systems
- International Bio-Recovery Corporation
- ISK Biotech Corporation
- ISK Biosciences Corporation
- InterMountain Canola Company
- Jentzsch/Kearl Farms
- JH Biotech
- L and L Formulators
- Landview Fertilizer Company
- Langille Consulting LLC
- Loveland Products, Inc.
- Luxembourg Industries
- Maag Agrochemicals
- Millennial Technology
- Mobay Corporation
- Monsanto Company
- Montana Microbial Products
- Natural Resources Company
- NCA Biotech
- Nichino America, Inc.
- Northwest Ag Products
- Nor-Am Chemical Company
- Pennwalt Corporation
- Phyton Catalytic, Inc.
- Plant Health Technologies
- Rhone-Poulenc Ag Company
- Ricerca, Inc.
- Rohm and Haas Company
- Simplot Chemical Company
- SDS Biotech Corporation
- Snake River Sugar Beet Co.
- Source-One West
- Sumitomo Chemical Co., LTD
- Tabox, Inc.
- Tetra Agricultural Products
- TransAgra Corporation
- Terra International
- Tessenderlo Kerly Group
- Tiger-Sul Products
- Uniroyal Chemical Company
- Uniroyal Chemical
- United Phosphorous, Inc.
- Valent Corporation
- Vicksburg Chemical Company
- Western Management Group
- Zeneca Inc. Ag Products