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Mason Family Farms

“We’ve had organic inspectors question our yield estimates. But those yields are what we’ve come to expect.” - Christine Mason, Mason Family Farms

It’s a confident statement, but one that Mason Family Farms, of Whitewater, Wisconsin, stands by saying. It is also a strong indication of the success they have had with Blue River Organic Seed for over ten years.

The Mason’s, who are now in their fourth generation of farming, have been certified organic for 15 years. However, many of their field practices have been geared towards organic long before certification. Making up the farming operation is Steve and Christine Mason, and Steve’s parents, John and Sally Mason. As John, the third generation of Mason farmers refers to their organic farm, “I was farming this harder way for years and now we’re back to it, but better than before.”

The word harder is repeated throughout a recent conversation with the Mason family; mostly used to describe the differences in farming organically. But it’s important to know for the Masons, that the word harder also means rewarding.

“It’s more work, and it’s not easy. You have to be committed to the time it takes to farm organically and still be successful,” Steve Mason shared. For the Masons, that commitment of time has been strongly focused on matching quality products and sound agronomics.
Both Steve and Christine have worked in other areas of the agriculture industry and among many types of farming. That is much of the reason they can accurately make these comparisons. Steve, having previously raised dairy on the family farm and worked for a Wisconsin farm cooperative, and Christine, who has extensive agronomy experience from multiple angles of the industry as well, are very open in sharing what they have learned and experienced in order to be successful organic farmers.

The expected high yields that Christine mentions are accredited to their focus on creating a soil and field environment that helps the right seed product grow. This includes quite a bit of soil science. On the Mason’s fields, they have always incorporated multiple crop rotations, including incorporating hay into those rotations, and speak highly of the positive effects it has on the soil environment. They also use cover crops on fields where able. Over time, creating the best possible field environment is what helps a quality seed reach its full potential.

Creating that ideal field environment is also part of Steve and Christine’s role at Standard Process, a whole food nutritional supplement company, based in Palmyra, Wisconsin. Christine serves as the farm operations manager of the company’s organic farm near Whitewater, and Steve is also the farm supervisor. At both their family farm and the Standard Process farm, they take careful consideration into the health of their field and soil conditions to reach quality yields and products.

When you mix these strong agronomics together with a product like Blue River Organic Seed, the results are outstanding. Last year, one of the soybean fields averaged 70 bushels per acre. “We’ve been extremely happy with our Blue River seed,” says Christine. “Even in years of short rains, our Blue River seed has remained great due to its drought tolerance,” Steve adds. The yields they have been able to achieve continue to not only meet, but exceed, those that they had experienced previously when farming conventionally. The Blue River soybean field in the photo above has been farmed organically for several years, and it is one that the Mason’s are managing this year for Standard Process.

Growing organically takes a focus, some work and great support, including such from your seed company. Blue River is proud to be a part of the Mason’s successful family farming traditions. We want to be a part of yours as well by continuing to fulfill on our promise of the high-quality organic standards and performance in all of our seed products.

Customer Spotlight

The Organic Grower


Blue River Organic Seed has always made supplying organic seed its primary focus, as it is the core of our business. Even included in our name is a reflection and promise of this. However, supplying organic seed is only half of the equation. Our products must also bring value to our customers. Value can be in the form of extra yield potential or a special characteristic that meets a specific need. An example of this is found in one of our flagship products, PuraMaize. As GMO testing of grain becomes more routine due to customer demand, PuraMaize will show its true value to you, our customers. The time is near, and we are ready with new product releases for 2019 and beyond.

The Organic Grower


Blue River is excited to kick off a new season. We are happy to announce the return of customer discounts that offer great savings potential, especially in the month of September.  In addition to our returning products, we have added several new corn, soybean, alfalfa and sorghum varieties to complete our 2016-2017 lineup. We are excited about our new products which have undergone extensive testing and were chosen for their outstanding performance in organic farming systems, with emphasis on strong yield potential. We will have good availability in all maturities, including late season corn.

The Organic Sower


Organic farmers have significantly increased their use of sorghum sudangrass products in recent years.  This growth has been the result of several factors. - BMR sorghum sudangrass products have better digestibility and agronomics than older products - Seed costs per acre are often less than corn seed raised for silage  - BMR sorghum sudangrass products are often more drought tolerant - Because of later planting and rapid growth - BMR sorghum sudangrass products offer the grower more options and flexibility

In normal growing situations, the brown color of the mid-rib, often more pronounced when the plants are younger, allows the grower to identify the BMR products. The brown mid-rib is correlated with a reduced level of lignin in the stalks and plants.

Cattle, eMerge, PuraMaize, Sudangrass

The Organic Sower


Consumer demand has fueled significant growth in the organic industry, creating a real need for high quality organic seed. Without this seed, the industry will face challenges.  As a farmer, you don’t just want an organic variety - you also want a product that performs like its conventional counterparts with strong agronomics and high yield potential. What makes Blue River Hybrids unique is our dedication to you – the organic farmer – and our unrelenting focus on bringing new products to market that perform reliably in organic environments.  

Bringing Innovation to Organics - Blue River Hybrids strives to deliver the best, most advanced organic seed products on the market to meet the needs of our customers. Only the best products make it through our pipeline. We introduce products that offer strong yield potential, agronomic stability as well as perform on a wide range of organic environments.  

Tested Locally Throughout the U.S. - To ensure products will perform for our customers no matter your location, Blue River tests its products locally throughout the U.S. This year, we’ve expanded our corn testing to include more locations in the eastern corn belt, northern and southern U.S.  We enhanced forage testing in the eastern area as well as additional soybean testing locations in Group 3 and Group 4 maturity areas.

New Products for 2016 - Blue River is offering a wide variety of new products for the 2015-2016 season. When adding a new product to our pipeline, we evaluate it based on yield potential as well as disease resistance, standability and plant stature, among other characteristics. These products have undergone significant testing to ensure they'll perform in a wide variety of organic systems.

Advice, Customer Spotlight, Products, PuraMaize


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