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Regenerating agriculture: Pacific Seeds’ new chapter

Pacific Seeds has unveiled a new vision for its 57th year in business, with an even greater focus on agricultural innovation, research and adapting for climate change.

The company’s new direction follows a long history as an industry-leading seed provider and will drive the development of new seed processing technology and advancements in plant genetics to benefit Australian farmers and the industry.

At the helm is Pacific Seeds Managing Director, Barry Croker who says the goal is to provide growers with the best products, to challenge conventions and consistently add value within the agricultural and food industries.

“Growers, retailers, agronomists and other industry participants might notice the branding refresh, with a new logo being rolled out from August (2019), but the changes run deeper,” Mr Croker said.

“Pacific Seeds has a long history of delivering value through its significant investments in research and innovation and this will only increase as we continue to expand our technical development capabilities.

“Our technical development teams are a key point of difference in our industry, they conduct the research and provide information on how growers and consultants can use Pacific Seeds products to their best potential in a changing climate.

“Pacific Seeds will continue to invest in its people, facilities and technology to improve product standards.

“We have an unyielding belief that the future is bright, which is reflected in our investment this year (2019) in a new $2.6 million seed processing line in Toowoomba.

Staying relevant in a competitive global market is vital according to Mr Croker, with more than 1.6 million jobs in Australia dependent on the agricultural industry.

“In our experience, farmers are resilient, pragmatic optimists and we are building our business around catering to them.”

Pacific Seeds continues to invest in its own plant breeding programs but is also partnering with other institutions to bring new technology to Australian farmers.

The launch of Pacific Seeds’ world-first herbicide tolerant sorghum technology and two new herbicide resistant hybrid canola varieties to the Australian market in the last 12 months alone demonstrates its commitment to innovation.

“In 2018, we launched our premier imidazolinone-tolerant grain sorghum line, which features our proprietary ‘igrowth’ trait. In canola, our new TruFlex hybrids offer canola growers a wider spraying window, extending beyond the current six-leaf stage up to first flowering.

Mr Croker said farmers are always searching for the next innovation and Pacific Seeds is excited to offer them the latest technology.

“The company is also offering a dual-herbicide tolerant non-GM canola hybrid combining Clearfield and Triazine Tolerant technologies – Hyola CT. This technology will be useful for all growers but especially for those in South Australia who have been asking for a product such as this for many years.

“There are many more canola stacked traits in the pipeline to benefit growers in years to come,” Mr Croker said.

“While the industry has been struggling with drought, Pacific Seeds has been investing in developing traits and exploring management techniques that can help deliver more dependable outcomes in these harsh environments.”

Mr Croker said Pacific Seeds is also engaged in sorghum heat tolerance research in collaboration with other industry bodies.

Pacific Seeds, the University of Queensland and Queensland’s Department of Agriculture and Fisheries have together received $605,000 from the Australian Research Council for a project to look into identifying sorghum genes with improved heat tolerance and incorporating them into new varieties.

Pacific Seeds is also expanding its wheat breeding operations in WA through its breeding arm, LongReach Plant Breeders, employing a breeder to deliver improved wheat varieties to West Australian growers.

“We’ve been supplying seed to Australian farmers for well over 50 years, and we see the new direction as an important way of ensuring Pacific Seeds continues to be a valued partner to Australian growers for many more generations to come”.

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