As demand for seed treatment knowledge and products grows among farmers, retailers and others in the seed industry, Syngenta is expanding its North America Seedcare Institute in Stanton, Minn. Construction began August 2015 and is on track for completion by the end of 2016.
“Seed treatment technology is advancing, and, along with that, we’ve seen a marked increase in the number of customers interested in learning how to get the most benefit from our technologies,” said Ravi Ramachandran, head of the Syngenta Seedcare Institute, North America. “The expanded Syngenta Seedcare Institute will give us the resources to educate and train a greater number of customers and improve the overall quality of our seed treatment offerings.”
Since 1995, the Stanton site has been a home for seed-treatment work and a resource for sharing best practices to maximize the effectiveness of seed applications. At Stanton, seed company employees and retailers benefit from training sessions, onsite treating services and labs where real-life environmental conditions can be mimicked.
The 38,000-square-foot addition will be nearly five times larger than the current facility and include a Seedcare technology laboratory, treating equipment and planter-performance testing area, seed-quality assessment lab and customer interaction center, featuring multimedia demonstrations about Syngenta Seedcare products and services.
“We have Seedcare Institutes around the world that deliver local solutions to our customers,” said Jeff Cecil, head of crop protection product marketing at Syngenta. “These institutes take the particular factors of customers’ operations into account, whether it’s a certain climate or environmental condition or the particular equipment they have. Stanton is the premier resource for seed treatment in North America, and the expansion is going to help us go even further in helping customers. Here, we can offer all the knowledge customers need about seed treatment, from application and how to calibrate equipment, to how to deliver the right dose on the seed.”
When first introduced more than 35 years ago, seed treatments were a revolutionary way to protect seeds from disease by applying fungicide directly to the seed itself. Today, Syngenta has a portfolio of seed treatment options for managing diseases, insects and nematodes. These treatments help protect the seed, as well as its yield potential.
“Along with seed treatment and application expertise, Syngenta provides ongoing service through a network of Seedcare experts who work with customers in the lab, at the treater and on the farm,” said Ramachandran.
In 2014, the Stanton facility trained more than 700 growers, retailers, applicators and industry partners, almost triple the number from the previous year. In 2015, Syngenta launched an exclusive online resource for Seedcare customers, the Seedcare Application and Resource Center. The portal offers recipe calculators to make sure recipes and formulations are based on the most up-to-date information.
There is a recently revamped Syngenta Seedcare website at www.syngenta-us.com/seed-treatment/.