24 July 1998

CUT SEED COSTS WITH CARE

Seed – will yours be the source of a successful crop or the start of untold trouble throughout the growing season?

That is the question many growers need to ask as they plan their autumn sowing. How seed is sourced, which variety is chosen, how it is dressed and the way it is drilled all has a big impact on subsequent management.

With crop prices on the floor the temptation is to cut costs accordingly. But nothing could be more dangerous. Cost cutting is vital, but it must be based on technical knowledge, not a wish and a prayer.

With that in mind the level of professionalism now emerging across the sector is welcome. Gone are the days of rough-and-ready seed cleaning contractors and razor sharp seedsmen more intent on commission than good advice.

Seed testing, cleaning and appropriate dressings all ensure farm-saved seed can now be as cost effective as certified seed, provided a professional approach is adopted.

But do not let the professionalism stop there. Getting seed into the ground is a vital last step, too. Many growers slipped up this season when a mild winter caused problems where high seed rates were used for early drillings.

The challenge is there for all. Seed costs can fall, but they will only benefit your business if savings are made without compromising quality. Our Seeds Focus supplement aims to help you achieve just that result.