Seed World

Independents Look to Break into the Carbon Market, Bryan Gerard Says

Since the Biden Administration came into office, there’s one thing on everyone’s minds, from businesses to policymakers: sustainability. Agriculture is no different, and one solution coming to mind? Participating in the carbon market with more carbon sequestration and more incentive-based programs for growers.

But, as of right now, most of the moves towards the carbon market have been made by larger, multinational companies. One question’s now arising: how can independent companies get involved in the carbon market?

“[Independents] are struggling with definition,” says Bryan Gerard, president of JoMar Seeds, during a Giant Views interview at the American Seed Trade Association’s CSS & Seed Expo.

Questions, such as: “What is the carbon program? What is the sustainability program? How do I connect that to my business? Where can I go and partner with one?” are all thoughts that Gerard has heard from his own independent customers.

“You’re an entrepreneur — you have to learn how to participate [in these programs] and utilize them to grow your business,” Gerard says.

It’s also important to keep in mind that the carbon market isn’t just a space for multinational companies.

“I often hear the comment, ‘It’s only for the big guys,'” Gerard says. “They need to flip that mindset. I think one thing that would help is that if there’s companies out there that have created sustainability that aren’t in the seed industry — partner with independent seed companies.”

In the future of sustainability and carbon markets for independent companies, Gerard thinks partnerships are going to be incredibly important.

“Licensing is a major component of our industry. Sitting down and doing things with your competitors is part of doing business now,” Gerard says. “Those collaborations are really healthy — independents just need to take that same approach and ask: ‘How do I connect? How do I integrate myself into what carbon programs are out there?'”

Make sure to watch the full interview above for all of Gerard’s thoughts on independents and carbon markets.

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