Seed World

Can we Boost Certified Seed Usage by Getting Consumers Interested? Next Week’s Panel Discussion Will Try to Answer This

How do we get more farmers to grow certified seed? That’s a question our industry has been trying to answer for a long time, with varying levels of success. Usage is highest among canola, soybean and corn — no surprise there. But in other crops like cereals, results have been mixed. Surveys show that most wheat farmers, for example, don’t use it.

Can we boost certified seed sales by looking beyond just farmers and successfully get consumers and end users interested in it? Could this encourage more farmers to use it? Seed World Canada editor will host a panel discussion next week at the SeedLink Conference in Brandon, Man., in an attempt to answer these questions and more. SeedLink is being hosted by the Manitoba Seed Growers Association.

The panel will feature three experts who will speak to the issue of how the quality food ingredients and other products that result from certified seed can demonstrate the value of it to consumers, and how our industry can better communicate this to the wider value chain.


And our Panelists are…

Adam Dyck, Canadian program manager for Warburtons based in Winnipeg. Warburtons is a British bakery company that produces a variety of bread products, and has been sourcing Canadian wheat for its bread for nearly its entire 146-year history. 2023 marks its 30th year of running its Canadian Identity Preserved Program. The company has established a strong relationship with Canadian farmers and industry. Warburtons uses a blend of Canadian and UK wheat to create the highest quality products possible, and this has resulted in Warburtons growing into the largest bakery in the UK, which produces and distributes over 1 billion bread products every year.

Peter Entz, VP Seed and Traits for Richardson in Winnipeg. He is responsible for overall strategic direction for the Richardson seed business with a focus on canola, soybeans, corn, wheat, oats, barley, peas and forages. He is also involved in Richardson Farms at both Kelburn Farm (Manitoba) and Bennett Farm (Saskatchewan).

Heather Hill, research manager at Red River College Polytechnic’s Culinary Research and Innovation team in Winnipeg. She has expertise in food development research, especially in plant and sustainable protein sources such as peas, beans, lentils and chickpeas. She also provides a science-based approach to help with the applied research activities of the department, such as food systems, scientific methods and food safety. She works with research chefs, food scientists, instructors and students to provide innovative solutions for the food industry.

The panel takes place Dec. 7 at 10:45 a.m. at the Clarion Hotel in Brandon. Join us next week for the SeedLink Conference and take part as an audience member of this panel — register here and access the agenda at this link. See below for an interview with Manitoba Seed Growers President Tom Greaves about the event.