Encouraged by the continued growth of the Australian agricultural industry, Pacific Seeds has invested $700,000 in a new seed treatment plant.
The plant is expected to help futureproof the company’s seed treatment capabilities and improve the efficiency of the treated seed operation.
It was officially opened by Federal Member for Groom, John McVeigh, at Pacific Seeds’ Toowoomba headquarters.
The automated setup coats sorghum, corn, canola and sunflower seed in a treatment to protect it from pests and diseases in the paddock, ensuring a healthier crop. It then dries, weighs and packages the seed.
Advanta Seeds (producer and supplier of Pacific Seeds products) managing director Nick Gardner said the investment will provide better handling of the seed, improved accuracy in treatment application, a safer working environment and energy savings.
“The new seed treatment plant will allow for a range of benefits, both to farmers and those handling seed,” Mr Gardner said.
“It will allow softer handling of the seed, maintaining seed quality throughout processing.
“It will provide better seed coating, meaning less rubbing off of treatment applied to the seed.
“We will also have the ability to apply seed treatment and powders in layers – increasing the efficacy of treatments and there will be improved accuracy in treatment application.
“Another key attribute is the improved ergonomics around the plant, providing a safer working environment and improving clean down times. We also expect greater efficiency of resources, with an estimated 40-50 per cent reduction in gas usage.”
Mr Gardner said there had been an industry shift in coatings in the past two decades, so the company was catering to what the customers wanted.
“The past 20 years has seen a massive shift in the agricultural sector towards planting treated seed due in part to improved treatment efficacy and hazard reduction on farm.
“Among the Pacific Seeds hybrid seed range, this shift has seen 99 per cent of product now being treated seed, from a base of almost zero 17 years ago.”
The plant was built by Australian-owned company, Graintech Engineering, which is based in Ballarat, Victoria.
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Image: Advanta Seeds managing director Nick Gardner