Eye on Agri-Business
Sanders Seed Sales
Owners: Tommy & Helen Sanders
Location: 5969 Raney Road, Norwood, Mo.
Company History: "We got started because there wasn’t any other Barenbrug dealer in the area. Once we started using the Barenbrug seed for the ryegrass, we found it did us a better job than the other ryegrasses. We saw what the alice white clover did for some of the neighbors, so we thought we would try some. We used to order seed from Indiana until I found out from the company that there is a Barenbrug dealer in north Missouri. We sell for Green Valley Seed, out of Kahoka, Mo."
Biggest Challenge: "Small orders are somewhat cost-prohibitive to us. We have to put in orders and get enough to make it worthwhile for them to come down here and deliver it."
Is there a philosophy behind your business?
"There are a lot of new products coming on the market and we like to try them. We try out lots of things on our own farm. We try to sell what has done well for us. We go to lots of pasture walks and see other varieties and compare them."
Products and Services:
"We sell mostly Barenbrug seed. Barenbrug is the second-largest seed company in the world. We also now have access to DLF Seed, which is the largest seed company in the world. We use European-bred ryegrass that is tolerant to the climate here. We sell a soft-leaf fescue that is safe for horses. We are starting to sell quite a bit of crabgrass. Last year we brought in Teff grass, a cereal grain out of Ethiopia that is just a summer annual. We sell an early-heading orchard grass that isn’t Barenbrug. All of our clover, fescue, and orchard grass seeds are approved for government cost-share programs. We’ve also been selling some sea salt that is being used as fertilizer. We deliver the seed in a 20 to 30 mile radius and a lot of people come here and pick it up."
How do you determine what you sell to someone else?
"You ask them what they’re looking for. What time window are they looking to fill? We sell some early grass and some late-heading grass."