Blue River Organic Seed is able to proudly state that even their newest-to-the-market seed products come with proven performance due to the tremendous backing of a diligent seed development program, and one that spans both years and states to deliver seed with high standards.
To ensure the best of the best when it comes to the organic seed planted in your field, Blue River utilizes years of in-field research to develop the top performing seed across various geographic and field conditions. The in-field research also allows Blue River to accurately catalog the characteristics associated with each variety of seed for all crops.
The screening program for new corn hybrids at Blue River includes nearly 50,000 plots every year across the Midwest. Each plot is equal to two rows, at 17.5 feet long. Often, the top performing corn varieties that are moved on to further in-field development include just the top five percent. Further selective breeding will occur in consecutive growing seasons to narrow the most optimal varieties and which are one step closer to their availability to farmers.
Those seed varieties reaching the end-of-the-pipeline research are then placed in 10,000 plots, across 30 locations, in at least 12 states to determine their final characterization data. This is where the corn varieties in the Blue River Product Guide and individual tech sheets are determined and where specific performance attributes of each variety are derived from.
PuraMaize hybrid corn varieties from Blue River are unmatched in the organic seed industry for seed purity contamination of GMOs, and farmers can count on it year after year. What is even more, these varieties are traditionally bred to block GMO trait contamination through blow-in pollen from neighboring non-organic farmers fields. The research and development needed for PuraMaize requires its own dedicated in-field research as well. PuraMaize corn varieties will be screened across 8,000 to 10,000 final characterization research plots, and even further screening where necessary, to ensure they remain consistent in their performance of yield, grain quality and grain purity.
While you will most likely never stumble across the location of Blue River's research plots, what you may see are what we refer to as strip plots, which include any number of seed varieties commonly planted in 6 to 10 row strips. These test plots are farmer-hosted, often include row markers or field signs which display the varieties planted in the plot, and most of which are on organic ground. While this data is not used to make seed development decisions, they are still valuable to compare performance on localized field conditions and are commonly used for yield data.
A total of 56 farmer-hosted Blue River strip plots are planted each year, and you'll find them in various regions across the United States. If you are interested in knowing more about these plots or viewing them for yourself, the Regional Sales Manager listed with each region would be happy to answer your questions.
Upper Midwest- 9 plots (Scott Ausborn- firstname.lastname@example.org)
East- 7 plots (Luke Howard- email@example.com)
West- 2 plots (Maury Johnson- firstname.lastname@example.org)
Central/West Central Midwest- 21 plots (Joe Fries- email@example.com)
Northeast Iowa- 6 plots (David Burns – 319.240.6351)
Michigan/Eastern Corn Belt- 13 plots- (Eric Ford - firstname.lastname@example.org)
When you Go Blue, each and every bag of Blue River Organic Seed is confidently filled with years of dedicated testing for the highest quality and performance, so you can farm better.