SAN CARLOS, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Farmer’s Business Network, Inc., the independent farmer-to-farmer network, today announced the F2F Genetics Network, a new seed line, model for the future of seed development and direct-to-farm distribution. The F2F Genetics Network will bring farmers conventional (non-GM) and post-patent seeds in corn, soybeans, and other crops direct to FBN members with greater transparency on genetic identity, yield performance and prices.
As seed companies consolidate and competition is reduced, high seed prices for farmers continue to hurt family farm incomes. Agrichemical companies have promoted increasingly expensive biotech traits to farmers, limiting the availability of non-GM seeds. Practices such as non-transparent pricing, regional Zone Pricing, relabeling, rebates, and hidden discounts have become seed industry standards at the expense of family farm profitability.
“FBN members are fed up with high seed costs and reduced competition from industry consolidation,” said Ron Wulfkuhle, Head of Seed at the FBN network, who will lead the F2F Genetics Network. “In the F2F Genetics Network, farmers go from seed consumers and price takers to seed creators and market drivers.”
A New Model For Seed: The F2F Genetics Network
The F2F Genetics Network combines a new independent breeder network, with the FBN farmer-to-farmer network and agronomic data science platform. The F2F Genetics Network puts farmers closer to the breeders than before, enabling farmers to actively co-develop genetics through data, creating a new era of high-performance seeds delivered at vastly lower costs for farmers.
The F2F Genetics Network was created to put Farmers FirstSM in seed, with these core principles:
- Interactive and Independent Network of Breeders and Farmers: Farmers take an active role in seed development through data to develop better performing varieties for their specific environments. By being totally independent, the F2F Genetic Network can find the best genetics from breeders, universities, and novel technology companies.
- Performance: F2F seeds will be uncompromising on performance with the flexibility to select and target the highest performing genetics from our independent breeder network. Farmers’ seed-soil placement, population, fertility and disease management, will be assisted through the FBN analytics network.
- Transparency: FBN members will get for the first-time greater transparency on genetic identity, trial and yield performance, and pricing. Fore genetic identity, seed parental lineages and relabeling matches will be shown up front. FBN members will get access to both pre-commercial breeder trial and actual in-field performance from other FBN members, instead of just the “promotional” test plots traditionally used to sell seed.
- Fair Pricing: The F2F Genetic Network will use national, transparent pricing, and eliminate the practice of discriminatory regional zone pricing. By selling direct-to-farm through the FBN DirectSM e-commerce platform, we will be able to keep seed prices exceptionally low.
- Freedom to Keep Seed: Seed keeping will be enabled with the Soy+1SM program, restrictive bundles are eliminated with flexible financing and discounts on other inputs in FBN DirectTM.
“Farmers will not only have access to lower cost seed, but also the transparency farmers have come to expect from Farmers Business NetworkSM, and the opportunity to actively shape the future of seed.” said Wulfkuhle.
Farmers Business Network is steadfast in putting Farmers First and leveling the playing field.
“Farmers Business Network at its core believes transparency, competition and innovation are keys to farmer profitability,” said Amol Deshpande, CEO of Farmers Business Network. “Input prices, specifically seed, continue to grow fast than the commodity prices farmers receive. We are looking to reverse this unsustainable trend by fighting for farmer profitability with innovative solutions that give farmers leverage, even if they are unpopular with the industry, or downright contrarian.”
Farmer Freedom Through Keeping Seed: The Soy+1 Program
For decades, seed companies have barred U.S. soybean farmers from saving seeds after harvest to plant the following season at vastly lower cost – which has allowed seed companies to charge full price every year. The F2F Genetics Network’s Soy+1 program will allow farmers, for a fee, to keep, clean and replant F2F Genetic Network-branded soybean seeds.
F2F Genetics Network Seeds Now Available for 2019
Orders and commitments for F2F Genetics Network seed have already commenced, with a limited supply available for the 2019 season. Initial products will include five conventional corn hybrids (RM 102 – 112) and four glyphosate tolerant soybean varieties (RM 2.2 – 3.1). These seeds have multiple years of production history, and are bred to be suitable in the mid-latitudes from Nebraska to Ohio.
Additional hybrids and varieties, as well as other crops are rapidly being added to the network.
Early order participants, who complete a credit application and qualify, will also receive 0% extended terms and the F2F UnbundleSM with discounts on an unrestricted selection of inputs offered through FBN Direct.
Creating an Independent Farm Economy to Put Farmers First
The idea for the FBN network originated from farmers who wanted to create an independent, farmer-driven information and commerce network.
With the launch of F2F Genetics Network, farmers are one step closer to having an totally independent full-farm profit system: from FBN Direct’s input ecommerce platform; to FBN Analytics comprehensive agronomic-network data analytics & decision support; to FBN Crop Marketing’s premium contracts, production contracts, advisory & risk management, and price intelligence powered by a global buyer network.
Yearly FBN membership costs only $700 with no punishing acreage fees, making it easily affordable for farms of all sizes.
About Farmer’s Business Network, Inc.
Farmer’s Business Network, Inc. is an independent farmer-to-farmer network, built by and for Farmers, representing Farmers FirstSM. FBN members receive comprehensive farm benchmarking, real world seed performance, input optimization and pricing analytics based on over 160 million acre events of real-world precision agronomic data. The FBN Direct e-commerce platform provides national, transparent pricing on ag chemicals, fertilizers, seeds, technology and services. FBN Crop Marketing provides farms premium contracts, production contracts, risk management, and price intelligence powered by a global buyer network.
The FBN network has grown to covering more than 25 million acres of member farms in the U.S. and Canada. Blending the best of Midwestern agricultural roots and Silicon Valley technology, the company has offices in San Carlos, Calif, and a National Operations Center in Sioux Falls, S.D., and employees spanning 44 states and Canadian provinces.
The FBN Network’s mission of creating a better farm economy has earned the support of world-class technology investors GV (formerly Google Ventures), DBL Partners, Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers LLP, Bow Capital, Acre Venture Partners, Temasek, and T. Rowe Price. To learn more, visit: www.farmersbusinessnetwork.com.
The sprout logo, “FBN” and “Farmers Business Network” are registered service marks of Farmer’s Business Network, Inc. F2F is a service mark of Farmer’s Business Network, Inc. F2F Genetic Network branded seed products are offered by FBN Inputs, LLC and are available only in states where FBN Inputs, LLC is licensed.