Pics: State-of-the-art seed processing facility opened in Co. Waterford

A state-of-the-art seed processing and distribution hub was opened in Belview, Co. Waterford on Thursday, July 6.

The facility, operated by Seedtech and DLF, covers a massive 52,000ft² and is said to host some of the “most sophisticated, technically-advanced machinery available for seed processing”.

Both companies will process high-quality cereal and grass seeds in the Waterford-based unit. Additionally, it will also serve as a hub for the preparation and packing of premium seeds for the food sector.

Speaking at the opening, Roy Power of Seedtech and DLF said: “The facility is state of the art for Europe, never mind Ireland.

It will be great for us going forward; this investment is important to secure our future in the industry.

“It’s also going to have a much bigger role in the wider agricultural industry, because at the very core of efficiency within agriculture is the seed industry.

“We think it (the seed industry) is the engine that drives the efficiency of agriculture. If you take DLF, and our grass varieties, we are continuing to breed higher-yielding grasses which deliver better intakes and extended grazing.”

Touching on Seedtech’s work in the arable sector, Power said: “Our cereal varieties are driving industries like brewing and distilling.”

The continued growth of both sectors, he said, has a lot to do with the varieties they are using. These varieties allow them to be more competitive on the world stage, he said.

We are driving those sectors and, today, our (DLF and Seedtech) varieties account for just over 40% of the Irish market in cereals, forages and grasses.

“That has been a big success and we are absolutely delighted; it’s down to the investment we are making here and our customers, colleagues and friends,” he concluded.

Nigel Whyte, Seedtech Commercial Director, added that the new facility signifies the company’s commitment to the seed sector in Ireland.

It’s a significant investment in growing and processing the seeds of the future, he said.

According to Seedtech, the plant will ensure that the company continues to offer quality seed to customers in Ireland and develop higher value export opportunities.

Paul Flanagan, DLF General Manager, also commented on the event. He noted that the opening of the new hub is a significant enhancement to DLF’s large operation in Ireland.

“We have made two large investments in recent times.

The first being our grass forage breeding trial site, which is the largest of its kind in Ireland; this will ensure we have the best grass seed portfolio in the coming years.

“The second is this, our new seed processing and distribution hub, which enables us to provide a top-class processing and logistical service to the market,” Flanagan concluded.

The hub is now fully operational for this year’s harvest and will service both Seedtech and DLF customers straight away.

Roy Power (right) from Seedtech and DLF speaking to Peter Bolger of Bolgers Agri about their new state-of-the-art seed processing facility