Seed industry is the future of grain production in Russia
According to the Ministry of Agriculture in Russia in 2017, the country produced the quantity of plant industry goods that equals 3.033 trillion rubles. The influence of seed factor in this sum takes from 607.0 billion rubles, to 1.517 trillion rubles. The losses due to bad seeds, not adapted to the soil conditions, take at least 1.517 trillion rubles. The volume of these poor-quality seeds takes up to 30%.
In the conditions of intensifying the agricultural process the leading role will be taken by sorts of high-quality seeds. Unfortunately, today not everything goes perfectly well in the sphere of seed industry. The seed market is not transparent. Many unreliable producers and dealers sell seeds of bad quality and unknown origin.
Besides, in many agricultural companies the quality of material-technical basis leaves much to be desired. Companies lack certified specialists who can prepare good, high-quality seeding material. They don't run probation, the sowing is not controlled, the seeding field is not properly cared of.
It is known that the seeds of high quality, added to the State registry of selection achievements, allowed to be used on a certain area (region-specific sorts) take the leading positions in forming the harvest. Their part takes 50% of the harvest. To compare, the fertilizers' impact is about 35%. Unfortunately, this potential is not used completely.
Technological and specialist fallback in the plant industry is possibly to reduce by turning to the principles of seed industry. This will allow to quickly improve the quality of seeds and to get a higher grain harvest. The growth might go up to 15%.
The organization of seed industry allows, firstly, to make the process of seed distribution more transparent, which will contribute a more rational spending of financial resources, provided by budgets on different levels. Here great help will become the development of information system in the sphere of selection and seed industry, that will provide the transparency of seed distribution. The Ministry of agriculture is working hard on this matter.
The main point of seed industry is the production of seeds done by specialized organizations, on the basis of seed factories with the latest technology. Seed production differs from grain production. Seed industry must be closely connected to selection and state sort testing, and be based on a high level of agronomy culture.
The transition of seed industry to industrial basis will provide the producers of agricultural goods with the opportunity of getting high-quality seeding material, and will allow a faster variety change and renewal. It will result in receiving richer and more stable harvests. This resource of strengthening the harvest capability must be used as much as possible. That is why the requirements to seeds must be strict and high. It is the main task of the monitoring institutions.
To run the seed industry into business, there has to be a transition period, during which a certain base must be created, that will provide all the agricultural products producers with all the necessary seeds in full.
When switching to seed industry, agricultural companies materialize all the received harvest and buy the reproductive seeds at a seed company to cover all the sowing area possessed. Meanwhile, they will be able to run their own seed industry.
Seed industry will be beneficial to all its participants. First of all, it will interest smaller and medium agri-companies due to their small material and technical support or even its absence.
For running the seed industry process these are the following points:
- A large amount of seeds sowed of low reproduction (lower than 2nd). In 201 in Kurgan region the sowing area of wheat seeds of 3rd reproduction and lower was 52,5%.
- less than 30% of agri-companies use classical system of seeding through sowing elite seeds
- absence or lack of qualified specialists
- poorly equipped households: lack of storage reservoirs and drying-sorting facilities.
In seed industry the grain production has the following benefits:
- companies get assistance on production technology from highly qualified specialists
- harvest growth up to no less than 15%
- additional profit provided by a higher sale price because of better quality characteristics of grain
- no expenses on seed preparation: drying, sorting, storing makes more than 1000 rubles per 1 ton
- no need for buying and serving special equipment for seed preparation
- multiplying the effectiveness of using the stock rooms when storing the grain due to the larger height of chaff. thus there comes a probability of higher sales prices.
-good payback for buying seeds. At the same time, there comes additional profit of 2000 rubles from each hectare.
- sowing seeds of best sorts, included in the registry of selection achievements, allowed to be used on a specific area, gives an opportunity to get subsidiaries on behalf of the state support
- no risks of getting fines from monitoring institutions for using seeds of poor quality and violating the rights of the sort's originator.
Seed industry gives the following benefits:
- annual use of 100% appropriate seeds, region-specific, protected by plant protection agents
- for grain harvest seeds of no lower than 2nd reproduction are used
- optimization of expenses due to no need to have a material-technical base for seed preparation and storage
- improving economic effectiveness of grain production due to higher harvests provided by high-quality seeds used. The productivity usually rises in 3-4 centner / hectar
The government is inetersted in improving the quality and amount of the agricultural products. This will fulfill the export demands. This is why the creation of a solid seed industry system needs governmental support. But, for now, the subsidiaries are not provided as a payback for expenses on seeds. Particularly, they must consider and opportunity to support agri-companies which buy seeds of 1st reproduction for 1000-1500 rubles per ton.
For example, in Kurgan region the average cost of 1 ton of seeds of 1st reproduction in 2019 was 12-13 thousand rubles. In case of the change in subsiding procedure of seeds, the producers may get a larger economic effect.
Why should reproductive seeds be subsided in case of running the seed industry?
At the starting point, the first 2-3 years must show the agricultural producers the effect from sowing high-quality seeds along the whole sowing area. If this is not done, the elite seeds will cost less than the reproductive ones.
The scientific-industrial agricultural company "Kurgansemena" has already started to organize seed industry in the region. In 2018 a new factory was started, with capacity of 20 million tons of sorted out seeds in tare from 50 to 800 kg/hour. The factory can prepare up to 100 thousand tons of seeds and to supply the agricultural producers for the are up to 500 thousand hectares.
In 2019 the agri-holding started seed industry. 4 enterprises of various types of property, material-technical equipment and production technology, from various agro-climatic zones take part in the project.
Recommendations on getting to seed industry were prepared in the 70s of XX century, in the USSR, by G.V. Gulyayev. In the 80s the material-technological base was created. But, because of some well-known reasons, the process was stopped.
An important role will be played in seed industry by the State committee of testing and securing the achievements of selection. It totally defines the sort policy of the country, that's why this organization should be paid a lot of attention to.
To conclude, I would like to say that the National union of selectionists and seed breeders accepted a complex plan of selection and seed industry development, which was considered on July 24th 2019 in Parliament. Among the recommendations:
1) work out suggestions (including those on the changing to the existing norms) on behalf of governmental support for agricultural producers
2) work out, together with the highest body of executive power of Russian regions, the matter of seed industry's development and effectiveness on some types of agricultural crops in order to provide the agricultural producers with high-quality seeds.
In this connection, the following words written by prof. Edelstein: "Agriculture is blind without biology, helpless without technology and dead without economy".