The Society for Range Management Convention recently hosted the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA)’s Environmental and Conservation Seed Committee for a session for ranchers on pollinators and native seed production.
The educational session focused on the importance of collaboration between federal government seed companies and private land owners.
Diane Wilson of Applewood Seed spoke on pollinator programs and the issues surrounding seed production for such programs. Dave Owens of Dow AgroSciences discussed industry and natural-area manager partnerships for plant materials management, and Dave Gagner of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation focused on the importance of public-private partnerships so that pollinator programs can also focus on sustainable lands, species and businesses.
“The land and our environment play critical roles in the success of America’s farmers,” ASTA President and CEO Andrew LaVigne said. “ASTA supports continued investments in flexible and efficient conservation programs that provide farmers with the financial and technical assistance needed to conserve our nation’s most precious resources.“
The second part of the session welcomed Dr. Tom Jones of the Forage and Range Research Lab at Utah State University, Scott Uhrig from Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and Dustin Terrell of Sharp Brothers Seed Company, all of whom focused on native seed production and sustainability.
“ASTA members are on the front lines in post-wildfire restoration efforts, providing BLM with the quality seed needed for long-term land rehabilitation,” LaVigne said. “To be successful, it’s critical the federal government works in close coordination with industry partners to ensure program funding is spent wisely, using scientifically-proven methods and plant materials.”