Seed treatment is the process of applying additives to seed including; insecticides, fungicides, nutrients, plant growth regulators and biological agents, providing plant protection and growth enhancement benefits during the seed establishment period.
Seed treatment provides a positive environment for growth, helping maximise plant establishment and the growth of young seedlings. This helps lay the foundations for a high producing pasture or forage crop.
The first four to six weeks after sowing is a critical stage in the life of a new plant as seedlings emerge and develop their plant structures. This is the period when seedlings are most at risk from external pressures and the period when seed treatment has an important role to play.
Seed treatment has a greatly reduced impact on the environment, typically applying less than 1% of the active-ingredient per hectare in comparison to ‘broad-acre’ chemical applications, resulting in a positive effect for humans, livestock, birdlife and the soil environment.
Seed treatment is strongly endorsed by industry groups including The Forage Brassica Development Group and DairyNZ through the Pasture Renewal Leadership Group.