Giant Views: Supporting Independence
I am proud to report that the Independent Professional Seed Association, founded nearly 22 years ago by a handful of progressive, independent seed company owners, is still thriving today.
I have had the privilege of serving the association as its president and am completing a second three-year term on the IPSA board of directors.
During much of the history of IPSA, seed companies have adapted to rapid changes in plant genetics, biotechnology, seed treatment and enhancement technology and utilization. IPSA members have rapidly adapted their businesses to address these industry changes, and to maintain a significant market share of the hybrid corn and soybean business in the United States.
While the majority of IPSA members (historically and currently) have an emphasis in corn and soybeans, the association is seeing an increase of new members among the specialty crop segments, ranging from cereal grains and grasses, to legumes and cover crops. These companies see the benefit of an IPSA membership as a very important part of their business success—having an advocate in your corner becomes vital as specialty crops enter a more diverse and complex marketplace.
Our family-owned seed company, Star Seed in Osborne, Kan., is a perfect example of this phenomenon. We have been IPSA members for over 15 years, and continue to find value in the programs that IPSA offers to its members. From outstanding educational webinars to the networking opportunities offered during the annual conference, IPSA provides our Western Kansas-based company with tangible benefits each year.
Whether the need is for a voice with genetic and trait suppliers to assure broad access to germplasm, traits and treatments, or someone to develop and deliver an annual conference truly geared for independent, regional seed companies, IPSA has been on point for Star Seeds, and I think you will find that out as well.
If you are not currently an IPSA member, or have never attended an IPSA Annual Conference, now is your time.
Dennis Lutgen, president of the Independent Professional Seed Association and owner of Star Seed Inc.