Breeder launches scheme to share risk of growing rapeseed

Oilseed rape growers will be able to benefit from a new scheme which allows them to pay for only half of their seed costs if their crop fails to establish this autumn.

The scheme, which is new for 2020, is run by breeder KWS and builds on its oilseed rape establishment partnership which was launched last year.

The initiative aims to give producers greater confidence in planting the crop, since the ban on neonicotinoid seed treatments in 2018 resulted in a huge decline in the number of UK farmers growing OSR.

See also: Sheep grazing eliminates need for rapeseed growth regulators

Support for growers

KWS oilseed rape manager Julie Goult explains how the company wants to give growers as much support as it can, which is why the arrangement will be available nationwide, via a network of merchants and seed suppliers, and with a range of varieties on offer.

Growers will pay 50% of their oilseed rape seed costs up front and the second half of the payment will be waived if their crop does not establish. 

Ms Goult says: “We are sharing the risk of growing the crop by going halves with growers in recognition of the challenging issues we all face around the continuing production of oilseed rape. 

“It is our way of encouraging people to not lose faith in the crop, keep learning about how to grow it successfully with regard to their own farming situation, and share expertise around this.” 

Growers who sign up for the scheme will also benefit from the company’s oilseed rape knowledge network which features email updates and advice. 

For further information on how the scheme works and which distributors are taking part, visit www.kws-uk.com