First electric tractor in the state being tested out in Central Point

CENTRAL POINT, Ore. — A new electric tractor may be plowing the future for the farming and agricultural industry, right here in the Rogue Valley.

It’s the first in the state to do so.

Rusted Gate Farm in Central Point is partnering with Forth and Sustainable Northwest in evaluating and demonstrating the new technology.

The farm is serving as a test case to best explore areas to develop, while increasing knowledge, access, and the adoption of electric farm equipment.

The non-profit farm experiments with traditional, alternative and innovative farm practices. Farm manager, Dave Picanso, says trying out the new machinery has been exciting.

“The thing that jumps out at you is how quiet it is, especially with no cab, it really is quiet. The implements make more noise than the tractor itself and surprisingly, it has quite a bit of power and torque,” said Picanso.

Picanso says the engine is comparable to a 30-horse tractor.

He says it charges using regular 220 volts and can last up to 3 hours in the fields.

Farmers hoping to purchase one have to wait, the prototype does not yet have a release date.

NBC5 News reporter Mariah Mills is a Medford native. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a Bachelor's Degree in journalism. She also minored in sociology. In school, she covered Oregon athletics for the student-run television station, Duck TV. When she's not reporting, she’s reading, hiking and rooting for her favorite teams, the Seattle Seahawks and the Oregon Ducks.
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