There have been a few major factors in reducing over-all seed supply throughout the seed industry. The biggest factors were major storms across a large swath of the seed production belt, poor pollination due to extreme heat, and a late season demand for early varieties that could not be replaced with new acres. This has left most seed companies short on corn seed. We have heard of one company having only 70% of what they sold last year available!
This means certain companies will either be short or are going to rely on South American production to make up for the shortfall. South American production is always risky. By the time it is harvested, bagged, and shipped to the Midwest, it can miss the proper planting window. Also, historically speaking, quality has not been as good as U.S. seed. The South American production is going to be further strained by production levels 4 or more times higher than normal.
At Renk Seed we anticipated a big growth year. We budgeted to have 160% of last year’s sales and because we avoided most of the storm damage, we still ended with 151% more than last year. This puts us in a stronger position than most other seed companies.
To date, our sales have been outpacing even our lofty projections. Our products have been raising the performance bar and we are already getting sales from other seed companies that are unable to deliver. This is going to put a lot of pressure on our supply. In fact it already has.
The biggest challenge has been getting speci c products. A large number of products are already sold out, directing customers to select another variety. Looking at the sold-out list, the good news is that most of these products are the older, more established products. We still have most of the newer products available and these we tend to believe have improved performance potential. Long term we think these would be your primary choice once you see the uptick in performance.
Renk Seed has always been very up front with availability. Most seed companies are more than willing to take the order, regardless of supply. They intend to “sort it out” later at their convenience, not yours. This spring will clearly di erentiate Renk Seed from some of our competitors. We will not continue to take orders for sold out products. If a hybrid is over sold, customers will be informed as soon as possible so that they can have access to another product. ese are simple and ethical business practices that we follow.
As a producer, I would make sure you order your corn as soon as possible. We hope you order from Renk Seed, but if you don’t, we encourage you to take early delivery of the seed to make sure you get the seed promised to you.