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INDEPENDENT SEED ASSOC. BOARD VOTES IN FAVOR OF SELLING SEED BY COUNT
Source: Independent Professional Seed Association news release

The Independent Professional Seed Association (IPSA) Board of Directors has voted unanimously in support of an association position regarding seed sales by count. Agricultural seed is planted by count (seeds per acre) in most cases, and seed companies prefer to market seed based on the units of measure most utilized by their customers.

IPSA was invited to participate in a "Seed Summit" hosted by the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS) on May 12 in Des Moines, with Bill Latham (Latham Seeds) and Greg Ruehle (IPSA) attending. Other groups represented at the meeting included ASTA, state seed certification officials, several individual seed companies, and a variety of state officials from IDALS and the Iowa Attorney General's office. The meeting was led by Iowa director of Ag Bill Northey.

Challenges facing the seed industry regarding sale of seed by count include the lack of a Maximum Allowable Variance (MAV) for seed in the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) handbook, as well as labeling requirements for companies who might choose to label contents by weight, by count or by both measures.

Since that initial meeting, an industry-wide effort has been initiated by a number of stakeholders, including IPSA and ASTA, to develop necessary amendments to the NIST handbook to allow for sale of seed by count. The group hopes to begin the amendment process yet this fall - an effort that could take one to two years to complete.

IPSA's position is supportive of seed industry efforts to allow sale of seed by count (in addition to or in lieu of sale based on weight of the container or package). In order to establish seed count as a reasonable merchandising option, IPSA supports several modifications to the NIST handbook.


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