Seed World

Some Exciting Things in Processing Equipment are Coming in 2022


Mark is a farm boy from Treherne, Man., and went to the University of Manitoba where he obtained his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business. He’s served as Nexeed president for 11 years, during which time he’s marvelled at the pace of technological change in seed processing equipment.

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In this special podcast edition of Germination Insiders, Nexeed President Mark Metcalfe looks back on the year that was and ahead to some exciting things coming up in 2022. He also tells us his favourite holiday memory from childhood and what a typical Metcalfe family Christmas looks like.


GERMINATION: What’s your favourite childhood memory of the holidays?

MARK METCALFE: I can remember the excitement of coming down and seeing what Santa left, that was always a pretty big thing. You know, honestly, that’s probably it. And there was always some really great times, relatively large family gatherings, you know, extended family usually for Christmas Day or Christmas Eve, which were always a lot of fun as well. So I think those are probably the two things that that I would say stand out to me from 40 years ago.

GERMINATION: What dos a typical Metcalfe family Christmas look like?

MARK METCALFE: It’s a pretty consistent program, every year we are with my wife’s extended family on Christmas Eve for a while to get together late afternoon and have some dinner, and then the next morning we’ll be at home and some of the grandparents drop by in the morning and unwrap some gifts. Then we have some downtime in the afternoon, and then it’s our turn to host Christmas dinner. When that’s over, we do have a pretty clear calendar. The 26th is usually not something that we have scheduled out after the lead-up to the 25th. It’s nice to have a little bit of a break.

GERMINATION: What’s your favourite annual tradition?

MARK METCALFE: We make it a habit not to work and really take a good break the weekend between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. And what happens during that time isn’t always the same every year. Some years we travel and some years we stick around home. But the the opportunity to just, you know, take a mental break from being at the office and about thinking about the business, at least a lot less, is something that I’ve found to be a really good opportunity, it’s a good chance to recharge. And it’s a time when I can do that without feeling like I should be paying attention to things at the office. So it’s an opportunity to have a little fun and to take a break and spend some time with family and to get a good recharge and, and be ready to go for the January stretch, which is always a busy time.

GERMINATION: What was the biggest challenge Nexeed faced in 2021?

MARK METCALFE: COVID I think has taught us something about having a little bit of patience. You know, having patience and the confidence to be patient and you know, some things which are out of our control, we have to be patient and let those get righted before we’re gonna be able to move along at the pace that we want to. I’ve seen that in the market, you know, there was a pause for a while and people were slowing down what they were going to buy. And so we saw that reflected in some of our sales levels for a while. And we learned to be patient and confident and wait it out and know that it’s not anything that we were doing wrong, it’s just circumstances which are there. That was early in the pandemic. More recently, it’s been supply chain related issues, which I think everyone’s experiencing. Once again, we learned to be patient. We are doing our best. And so is everyone else involved. So just be patient and we will all kind of, at the end of this, get where we’re intending to go. If we keep that perspective, things can be a lot less stressful and a little more orderly on a day basis.

GERMINATION: What did you learn from that?

MARK METCALFE: Today we understand quite a bit more about ourselves as a group of people who are making up what Nexeed is we understand far better than we used to what we bring to the table. So we have a much greater self awareness about what our own strengths and weaknesses are. And it really helps us with, with being confident and self-assured where it’s appropriate, but also aware of where we’re probably a little weaker and how to be extra careful or extra diligent to make sure that we’re not going to make a mistake that we regret. So, you know, either we want to not focus on those things, or maybe we want to do something to try and improve, and become a little stronger in those areas, you know, along the way. That kind of enables you to make better choices about what you’re going to try and do and where you’re going to try to grow. You have to transpose that against what the market wants or needs. But if the market needs something that you’re not good at, you know, is that really an opportunity for you?

GERMINATION: What’s coming up in 2022 for Nexeed?

MARK METCALFE: There’s definitely some things that we’re working on that are a little bit new territory for us. There’s geographical areas that we are trying to put more focus on than we used to, and so I would absolutely say that I hope we can earn our way to the forefront of potential customers’ minds by proving that we’re a good partner to work with. There’s also market spaces as well that we’re looking to break into.

GERMINATION: What’s your biggest wish for 2022?

MARK METCALFE: There’s some new equipment that we’re bringing in that we had some early success with in this current year and I’m very hopeful that we’ll see that trajectory continue. So we have an opportunity to gain the experience and become more confident about that than we than we are today. Not to say we aren’t confident in it, but we just have a lot to learn and so I wish that a year from now we’re feeling really, really comfortable with a whole bunch of details about this. Some of this new stuff that we’re doing, it can only be learned through experience.

On behalf of all of us at Nexeed, we would like to wish you and yours a happy holiday and a Merry Christmas. All the best in 2022!