about us

SoilOptix® provides the highest definition soil nutrient and texture maps to farmers, allowing for greater accuracy in management decisions on a field to field scale.​

Our History

 

SoilOptix® was established in 2017 as a partnership between Hubei Forbon Technologies, a large, progressive Chinese fertilizer company & Practical Precision, an influential precision ag technology company in southwestern Ontario. 

Practical Precision was founded by Paul Raymer & his father, Barry, who were influential in developing the Greenseeker & Y-Drop technologies on farms across the country, making them the first dealer in North America to sell the two as the ultimate side-dress system.

The technology used in the SoilOptix® sensor originated in the Netherlands as a tool for the geological industry, before coming to Canada in 2010. Practical Precision saw the potential in the technology and began further researching the use of gamma radiation in agriculture to develop nutrient and texture maps of the soil. 

With Barry since retiring, Paul operates SoilOptix® as a stand-alone company with it’s office located in Tavistock, Ontario, Canada.

Over the past 3 years, SoilOptix® has grown to be a global player in the agriculture industry, with dealers offering high resolution soil mapping services in over 10 countries.

As our service offering & dealership network grows, so does our in-house team. SoilOptix® has a full team of GIS Analysts that work tirelessly to produce the highest quality soil maps, & a team of Sales, Support & Admin staff who keeps the company running like a well-oiled machine.

Interested in learning more? Feel free to reach out, we’d love to meet you!

Our Team

Paul Raymer

Co-Founder & President

Paul grew up on a dairy farm in Oxford County and received his certification in Mechanical Engineering Technology from Fanshawe College – specializing in Mobile Equipment Design. Paul has a wide range of agricultural, industrial, and military experience; working on various engineering teams such as John Deere and General Dynamic. Paul has been instrumental in creating a tablet computer platform for GreenSeeker units and first introduced Y-Drop to the Canadian market. His passion for technology in agriculture has lead him to develop and educate farmers and agronomists across North America and Internationally about the utilization of SoilOptix® and higher definition soil maps.

Ryan Eyre

Technical Lead & Special Projects Coordinator

Ryan grew up on his 6 generation family dairy farm in Leeds and Grenville, Ontario. He attended the University of Waterloo where he had several co-op placements in the GIS field before he graduated with a Bachelor of Geography and Environmental Management. While attending school Ryan had a passion for real-time strategy games (Starcraft) where he qualified for the University’ collegiate squad. After graduating he desired to incorporate the skills cultivated from his time on the collegiate squad, his education, his interest in programming and machine learning, and his agriculture background into a career, which made SoilOptix® a natural fit.

Jennifer Ranni

GIS Analyst

Jen was born and raised in Kitchener, Ontario. She attended Wilfrid Laurier University and worked as an Undergraduate Research Assistant. Her favourite project was using satellite imagery and vegetation indices to predict time-sensitive agricultural practices and exploring the impact on grassland bird populations. After receiving her BSc in Geography and Geomatics, she attended the Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS) in Nova Scotia and completed her advanced diploma in GIS. After graduating from COGS, she worked in Grey County and the Muskoka region using GIS and CAD technologies with great attention to detail. She is happy to join the SoilOptix® team where her continued enthusiasm for investigating spatial data will produce quality soil maps and analysis. In her spare time, Jen enjoys hiking, swimming, reading a good book and spending time with family and friends.

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Nick Grivich

GIS Analyst

Nick was born and raised in St. Catharines, Ontario. He enrolled at Brock University in 2013 for Geography. Halfway through his undergrad, Nick discovered his passion for GIS and the environment. After graduating from Brock in 2018 with a BSc, Nick enrolled in the Niagara College GIS program. In October 2019, Nick graduated with a post-graduate certificate in GIS. He enjoyed working on projects related to light pollution, climate change, and historical geo-referencing. In his spare time, Nick enjoys hanging out with friends, playing hockey, going to the gym, and attending music festivals.

Zach Harmer

North American Sales & Support Manager

Zach has been raised surrounding the agricultural industry and a graduate of Brock University with a Bachelor of Science in Physical Geography and a graduate student under the Environmental Sustainability Research Center. His GIS expertise lead him to receive an ESRI Canada GIS Scholarship, and advance his knowledge in utilizing GIS with agriculture, for instance: crop suitability analysis in Perth County; risk for erosion to vineyards along the northern Niagara Region using RMSE; and his Masters research studying how changing agricultural practices in Niagara effects small stream networks using GIS and Remote Sensing. Zach started with Practical Precision as a summer student in 2015 before starting his Masters degree and resumed his role with SoilOptix® in May 2017. Zach is a die-hard baseball fan, having worked and volunteered for the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame for over 10 years. He continues to find time for teeing off at local golf courses during the summer and playing darts and cards with his friends on weekends.

Holly MacDonald

Team Lead (GIS Analyst)

Holly is currently the 4th generation to grow up on her family farm in Oxford County. Having spent the better part of her life being outside she was inspired to study the environment and has now earned two degrees; a Bachelor of Science in Physical Geography (Brock University) and a Post Graduate Certificate in GIS – Geospatial Management (Niagara College). She has completed a number of projects pertaining to her geographic background; most proud of her work on Agricultural Trends in Southwestern Ontario 2012-2015 (OMAFRA), Farm Runoff and its Microbial Effects on Human Consumption and Recreation (Brock University) and Soil pH Changes on a Slope, based on Drainage Capabilities (Brock University). Before post-secondary endeavors, Holly gained her love for geography through travel across North America during her dance career. Having completed all amateur exams finishing with top marks, Holly was nominated for 4 North American wide Sadie Simpson Highland Scholarships.

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Sarah Lepp

Research Scientist

Sarah grew up exploring hiking trails and parks in the Niagara Region, Ontario. She completed her Environmental Technician diploma at Niagara College, and moved onto complete a Bachelor of Science in Physical Geography and Great Books Liberal Studies at Brock University. During this time, her years of work at Agricorp helped her to grow as a researcher in the world of agricultural technology at Niagara College Research and Innovation. In 2019 she completed her Master of Science in Environmental Science at University of Guelph where she explored and applied machine learning techniques in the field of pedometrics. Sarah is excited to continue her exploration within the ag-tech industry with SoilOptix®.

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Adele Keyes

GIS Analyst

Adele was born and raised in Ottawa, Ontario, and moved to Toronto to complete her undergraduate degree in archaeology. During her time at U of T, Adele focused on Canadian archaeology, conducting archaeological excavation in B.C. on the Sunshine Coast, working in the university’s arctic archaeology lab, and beginning her career in consultant archaeology in the Greater Toronto Area. In her undergrad, Adele also took courses in GIS which sparked her interest in the field. After three field seasons of working in consultant archaeology, Adele went back to school and completed her postgraduate certificate in GIS through Fanshawe College. Adele loves playing guitar and being outside hiking or riding her bike. She’s excited to be working at SoilOptix® and venturing into the world of precision agriculture!

Lori Davey

Office Manager

Lori was born and raised in rural Princeton, ON. She headed to the beautiful north, Sault Ste. Marie, ON to achieve her 3-year diploma in Advertising Art & Graphic Design at Sault College of Applied Arts & Technology. The rural air called her home and she spent several years designing for various newsprint and media outlets. Applying her skills and expertise she gained, she went back to Princeton into the green roof industry. There she broadened her horizons and acquired new skills and applied them in the developments of high profile projects and worked with various clientele in the architect and landscape fields across North America, achieving several business industry awards. With the vast amount of knowledge through the years, she is enthusiastic in applying her finesse with a great team and building a career with SoilOptix®. In her spare time, Lori enjoys time with her husband and two beautiful daughters, time at the lake, volleyball and working out at the gym.

Jessica Clayton

Marketing & Administration

Jessica was born and raised in Innerkip, Ontario where she grew up actively involved in her community. Jessica is a people-person, and she found her passion for communications. She attended Conestoga College where she graduated with a diploma in Public Relations. Through her program, she had the opportunity to complete multiple marketing and communications campaigns for local businesses and found she was most interested in writing, social media management, and graphic design.  Since graduating, Jessica has come back to her hometown and is looking forward to beginning her career as a part of the SoilOptix® team. In her spare time, she enjoys playing softball and is an avid country music fan.

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Fabio Lopes

Research Assistant

Fabio is a Brazilian graduate with degrees in electrical and computer engineering, with over 25 years of experience in software and hardware development for the technology industries. Fabio is a newcomer who left Brazil to provide a better life for his family in Canada, and has gotten involved in projects like Multispectral imaging – whether aboard an aerial drone or land robot –  to provide precise, targeted information that the human eye is incapable of seeing by capturing different bands of light; providing analysis to increase crop yields. Such technology can minimize the use of pesticides, fertilizers, and water waste.
Fabio is also a researcher and inventor who holds two patents in projects and implementation of aerial protection systems using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) with cutting-edge technology.

In his spare time, Fabio enjoys cooking and playing chess.

Adam Da Silva-Gouveia

GIS Analyst

Adam was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario where he picked up and learned the game of basketball which he deeply enjoys and is subsequently a huge Raptor’s fan. Adam attended York University for his undergraduate degree where he obtained a BA Hons. in human geography (2018 graduate). Adam then moved out to the Niagara region for a year where he got his Post Graduate Certificate in GIS – Geospatial Management (2019).  During his post-graduate year Adam completed a number of milestones. Adam’s thesis project – The Bee Project was a year long effort to promote bee education and implementation in the Niagara Region. While in Niagara, Adam also picked up a passion for recreational drone flying, which lead to him obtaining his RPAS Advanced License and is now a certified Drone Pilot. Adam’s passion for geography comes from his constant European travels as child with his family. After employment in the Drone Industry Adam is looking forward in being apart of the SoilOptix® team and exploring the agricultural business.