As farmers across the Midwest continue to experience record temperatures and lack of rainfall, one question still remains. Will there be an adequate supply of corn and soybean seed for the 2013 planting season? With winter production, seed currently in cold storage and this year's production, Beck's Hybrids is confident it will be able to supply customers with its 2013 seed needs.
"Because we were prepared for unfortunate weather, we’re able to reassure our customers that we will have an adequate seed supply for 2013 planting," said Sonny Beck, president of Beck’s Hybrids. "As an independent seed company, we can make decisions quickly, giving our customers an advantage to access the best performing seed products, developed for their farm."
How does a seed company prepare for severe weather events? Last year, like much of the seed industry, Beck’s experienced a shortage in the seed corn crop. This spring, in an effort to alleviate a seed shortage, Beck’s planted twice the amount of production acres across a wider geography and within a two month window, from April to June. Many of the soils in Beck’s production acres have excellent water holding capacity. Production acres with lighter soils are irrigated.
"To achieve the same amount of seed we produced last year, our production acres need to average 22 Bu./A., which is about half of a normal year," said Jason Morehouse, production manager. "And right now, that is what we’re averaging. Fortunately, over the past two weeks we’ve received some very timely and significant rainfall. This, plus carryover seed and seed from winter production should bring our production totals to 150 percent, which is 50 percent more than the seed our customers used last year."
August is the critical time for soybean seed production. Unlike corn, soybeans pollinate over a six-week period, allowing for more opportunity to receive good pollinating weather. Beck’s Hybrids normally plans for 30 to 40 percent more soybean acres than expected sales.
"Our customers not only rely on us to deliver the best performing products, but to provide for their livelihood," said Beck. "We are farmers, too and we understand the challenges our customers face."