Agrilead, Inc. of Russell was recently featured in an article by Northwest Kansas These days Magazine. The journal, created by the Dane G. Hansen Foundation, is dispersed by way of mail to households throughout northwest Kansas.
This short article targeted on a few businesses that are serving to to change agriculture as a result of innovations in engineering and methodology.
(RUSSELL) – The sea of swaying, good green wheat vegetation that surrounded Jeff Ochampaugh as he stood in a examination industry in late Might appeared to be a residing testament to the effectiveness of what he does.
“We did all the things to this discipline that we would advise undertaking,” he claimed. Ochampaugh, president of Agrilead in Russell, specializes in caring for seeds. In 2014, his firm launched its portfolio of seed treatment products “and we have not taken our foot off the gasoline considering the fact that.”
Agrilead will make liquid polymer and dry powder coatings that can be mixed with seed treatment options to make them keep on the seed superior and strengthen the movement of seeds by planters.
Pesticides, fungicides and nematicides – which management pests in the soil that assault plant roots – as very well as fertilizers and organic goods that endorse germination and improve plant development can be utilized to the seed. No matter what remedy farmers want can be mixed with Agrilead’s goods to give the seed a uniform coat.
In 2020, the company grew to 10 staff, which includes Russell indigenous Gage Nichols, who graduated in December with a master’s in grain science from Kansas State College. Nichols is manager of analysis and progress. In the lab wherever he operates are drawers made up of samples of a wide variety of seeds that Agrilead items have been utilized to, together with garbanzo beans, cotton seed, canola, rice and radish seed. In May possibly, he was kicking off a task at the ask for of South Carolina peanut growers to see if Agrilead products could be utilised to boost expansion of peanuts.
“That’s an important component of our small business – that pipeline – having a good deal of hopeful assignments going,” Ochampaugh explained.
Decide your coloration
In this area of the state, Agrilead’s products are far more most likely to be made use of at co-ops or seed dealerships on seeds for soybeans or wheat.
“We estimate we’re going to get our merchandise on someplace between 7 and 8 million acres of soybeans this yr across the Midwest,” he said.
Seeds are dealt with in a continuous stream approach that ordinarily coats 1,200 lbs of seed per minute, Ochampaugh mentioned.
At times it is carried out while the farmer is standing there, and at times it is accomplished in progress.
He reported treating seed is a lot like painting – the high-quality of the application includes protection, overcome, and finish.
Agrilead seed finishes also contain colorants. Environmental Protection Agency rules demand that if a seed is treated with a pesticide, it ought to also impart an unnatural color to make it effortlessly recognizable. Dazzling hues also make it easier for farmers to location seeds in the ground when checking planting depth and spacing. Additionally, they just glimpse amazing.
“At trade shows, we chat about a seed that flows, demonstrates, shines, and vegetation greater,” Ochampaugh mentioned. He mentioned 90 per cent of handled seeds are crimson, but they also give inexperienced, blue, yellow, violet, purple and orange at the request of the co-op.
“We experienced a seed treatment operator in Illinois who was a breast most cancers survivor, and we worked up a pink formulation for her,” he mentioned. “It was a minor some thing particular that her buyers believed was great. It is Alright to have fun each now and then.”
Building farming safer
Agrilead’s wheat finisher, termed Impress, is specially very good for reducing the total of dust that comes off the seed, he explained.
“When you’re augering wheat into the drill, you get this crimson dust that arrives off,” he reported. “It can be a worry for employee publicity and an environmental hazard.”
Pixy, one particular of Agrilead’s very first merchandise, is a powder finish used on soybeans that received its name from consumers. “It was experimental and didn’t have a identify, but each 1 of our prospects claimed, ‘I’m fascinated in that pixie dust.’ ” he said.
Ochampaugh said considering that then a lower- dust formulation referred to as Pizazz has been patented, and a 3rd-generation product is below enhancement. Before any of the goods achieve the industry, they are thoroughly analyzed in field trials throughout a variety of rising areas.
“My town buddies are anxious at times about the impacts of agriculture on our atmosphere,” he reported. “I never blame them for questioning about these points, but I can testify that during the program of my job, we’ve manufactured big leaps forward.”
(Write-up and photographs courtesy of Erin Mathews, Northwest Kansas Currently Magazine and the Dane G. Hansen Basis.)