Tim Birkel Vice President Strategic Markets and Accounts, Nufarm Americas

One challenge of distributing seed-applied pesticides is having a strategy to deliver products that meet the market’s desire for customized, prescriptive solutions without being encumbered by EPA regulatory requirements and logistical realities. Most seed treatments contain a mix or blend of various fungicides and insecticides because no single chemistry is effective across the broad spectrum of seed-borne and soil-borne insects and diseases. Treatments also contain colorants and polymers because the look and flowability of seed is crucially important.

The ideal seed treatment would be a custom blended formula for each grower’s specific environment. Making and marketing any blended product comes with mandatory compliance of EPA regulations, which includes user signatures of prescriptions. Without these signatures products with custom blended formulas cannot be inventoried, making it difficult to precisely manage product needs in season. Our experience is that marketing custom blended services absolutely has a fit with some customers, but not all customers want or need to deal with a “customized” blend.

Nufarm’s goal is to provide customers with a broad array of options to conveniently meet their seed treatment needs. In addition to our existing custom blend service, we have developed a portfolio of registered, branded premixed products that simplify seed treatment. Customers can select from Nufarm EPA registered brands that provide a level of customized protection from basic to premium based on their specific environments.

Nufarm’s Sativa line-up of cereal seed treatments, and Spirato line-up of soybean treatments deliver stable formulations designed with a “good-better-best” approach that allows customers to select the appropriate product for their specific circumstances. Specialized chemists formulate these products with performance, flowability, seed aesthetics and long-term stability in mind. These products can be inventoried and redistributed as is commonly done with other EPA registered products.

We believe that this very logical approach simplifies seed treatment for those that believe it is sometimes over complicated.