It is with a sad heart that CropLife reports the death of long-time fertilizer and precision agriculture industry veteran Harold Reetz Jr. He was 74.
Within the agricultural industry, Reetz was known for encouraging the development of high yield crop and soil management systems through the efficient agronomic application of new technology, including remote sensing, geographic information systems, and precision agriculture practices.
Born in 1948 in Watseka, IL, Reetz grew up on a dairy and grain farm in the east central part of the state. After receiving his B.S. degree in 1970 from the University of Illinois, he earned his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees at Purdue University in crop physiology and ecology.
From 1974 to 1982, Reetz was with the Purdue Agronomy Department as Extension/Research Specialist in corn production for Indiana. He joined the Potash & Phosphate Institute in 1982. In 2004, Reetz became President of the Foundation for Agronomic Research (FAR). In 2007, he became Director of External Support and FAR for the International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI). He retired from IPNI in 2010 and formed Reetz Agronomics, LLC.
In addition to these roles, Reetz was a long-time contributor to CropLife and member of the magazine’s PACE Advisory Council until 2014. CropLife Editor Eric Sfiligoj had this to say about him: “Harold was a great person to work with, both in person and remotely, always providing valuable insights into the fertilizer and precision agriculture markets. He was always a welcome contact at many of the industry trade shows I would attend throughout the year, especially those held in his home state of Illinois. He will be greatly missed.”