How To Start A Work From Home Seed Business
Starting A Seed Business Is A Growers And Sellers Market!
Imagine something as inoculate as seeds being the secret sauce behind all of your favorite foods, i.e. fruits, veggies, bread, pizza, pasta.
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We like to eat, but have you ever stopped to consider where your food comes from?
Kinda like Jack in the Beanstalk.
You plant them-they grow food.
Wonder where they come from?
Who’s in charge of seed production?
Could you make money selling seeds?
How would you do it?
We’re going to show you how to start a seed business in 2020 that has the potential to bud into an extremely lucrative business venture.
But before we dig in let me give you the lowdown on my beat.Allow me to reintroduce myself… My name is Ippei…
Hi, my name is Ippei.
Like you-I had a lot of questions.
But not about seeds.
I was scouring the internet looking for an answer.
A way to ditch my 9-5 cubicle job.
Stop making money for the corporate boss and earn some real cash.
That’s when I found this course.
I remember it well.
It was 2014 when I signed up for this program that gave me the tools I needed to work from home.
Building and ranking websites that generate leads for small business owners.
That tree service site has been making me $2000 per month since 2014.
IMO this biz model is one of the best opportunities on the internet, and I’m going to show you why.
Yes Show Me How!Quick NavigationWhy Start A Seed Business in 2020?Increase In Consumer DemandSupplemental IncomeWhat Types of Seeds Should You Sell?Breaking Down The ProcessGrow Your PlantsProcess Your SeedsPackaging Your SeedsMarketingPricing Your SeedsOffer VarietyProducing Seeds On A Large ScaleSell HybridsLead Generation
Why Start A Seed Business In 2020?
It’s a growers market.
The trend to grow organic fruits and vegetables has only intensified in the last decade.
Worth over $61.50 billion globally, the seed market is experiencing exponential growth.
Fueled by organic options-new varieties-hybrids-and an increase in the online and international seed trade, there has never been a more advantageous time to consider selling seeds for profit.
Interested in cultivating a piece of this lucrative industry for yourself?
Let’s look at how to start a seed business in 2020.
Increase In Consumer Demand
The word on everyone’s lips.
People are embracing the trend for organic and home-grown produce in unprecedented volumes.
We’ve become more health-conscious and are taking an invested interest in where our food comes from.
Non-GMO and pesticide-free food is now at the top of our lists of must-haves.
Growing vegetables and some fruits at home have not only become commonplace for those looking to improve nutrition content.
But are a fantastic way to cut costs on grocery shopping or an alternative to purchasing imported produce that may not be up to par.
To get organic food you need organic seeds.
The demand is there.
Supply is limited.
The online trade of seeds is blowing up.
You could access a global market with your seed business.
But what’s driving the market?
There are a number of contributing factors as per this post which include:Factors Driving the Seed Market
- Advancements in seed technology & a trend towards organic food
- An increase in food production activities & technology enhancing production
- Less competition
- Government support
- Interest in home-grown produce
There is a definite interest from the general public to grow their own produce.
Enough to consider the financial possibilities associated with starting a seed business in 2020.
This article was published at the beginning of the pandemic and provides evidence suggesting that a seed business is more than just a profitable business idea.
If you already own a farm, then producing seeds as a secondary income is a no-brainer.
Grow extra and set aside a predetermined portion of plants at harvest for seed distribution.
How big you go is up to you.
If you want to run a full-scale commercial size production, you’re going to have to shell out coin for specialized equipment found in this article like:1
Harvester & Thresher2
Tractor & Seed Drills3
Seed Cleaners & Packaging
Add it all up and you’re looking at an investment of at least $10,000-$150,000+.
Take it down a notch and do everything by hand, and you save on equipment but don’t reap the profits of a large-scale enterprise.
If you don’t own land, you can grow indoors or on a small garden plot.
Choose plants with high germination rates that produce large yields or those difficult to find to get the best payoff.
No matter what size you land on-selling seeds can be a highly lucrative business endeavor as evidenced by this post.
What Types of Seeds Should You Sell?
The million-dollar question.
With over 380,000 different species of plants the slate is pretty wide open when it comes to choice.
Figure out who your target market is.
Are you a small or commercial-scale production?
Organic and culinary are front-runners.
And people like flowers.
But you could offer out-of-the-box varieties.
Hard to find and exclusive.
Let’s take a closer look at a few of the top suggestions offering the best returns on your investment.
As with any product-based business it’s always a good idea to identify opportunities in your market.
We’ve discussed the growing organic trend so it makes good business sense to choose organic seeds.
As for the actual plant species, you might consider a culinary plant of some kind.
A few of the more popular options as evidenced in this post include:
Organic-hard to find & in high demand
By selecting one of the popular vegetables outlined in this article, you gain access to a more significant plot of the market.
Implement vertical farming into the equation to maximize your growing space and your profit margins.
But sometimes it makes good business sense to go against the grain.
What do we mean?
Think about unique and hard to find seeds like Jerusalem Artichoke or Burdock Root.
Rare products procure hefty payouts-especially if there is a demand.
Use tools like Google Trends to see what people are searching for.
What kind of seeds are individuals looking to buy?
Figure it out and provide a solution.
Once you decide what to sell it’s time to determine the best way to grow fast and where to sell for maximum profits.
Breaking Down The Process
The scale of your enterprise is irrelevant to the method.
The fundamentals of growing-processing-selling and marketing are the same whether you opt for a small or commercial seed business.
To better capitalize on this business idea you have to nail down the how-where-when-and why’s.
So let’s dig in.
Grow Your Plants
Like Aerosmith says “you’ve got to learn to crawl before you learn to walk”.
To harvest seeds you need plants.
Grow the plants you determine to be top sellers.
You then have a crop that will produce the seeds you intend to sell.
You can opt to grow your plants from seeds or seedlings.
This article lists the best places to purchase seeds.
If you prefer to start with seedlings to expedite the process, check out this post for a few of the recommended distributors.
After your first batch of seeds has been processed, you’ll have a never-ending supply of new seeds to grow new plants.
The process of growing plants from seeds is relatively straightforward and includes:
- Germination-a mix of the perfect moisture & sunlight
- Growth-hello photosynthesis
- Harden & Plant Off
- On-going Maintenance
We’ve really watered down the details.
But check out this post if you want a more comprehensive breakdown of the process.
If growing inside be prepared with the correct sized pots for the harden off stage.
Plowed and fertilized plot primed for planting.
Follow the process to ensure your plants grow as quickly and abundantly as possible until they are ready for harvest and processing.
Process Your Seeds
Processing the seeds is by far the most essential component but it is also the most challenging.
You can’t just sell your seeds directly off the plants.
There is a system.
A step-by-step operation to getting it right and ensuring you reap the highest rewards for your efforts which includes: How To Process Seeds Step 1
Seeds need to be mature before drying-a good test is if the produce appears detached from the plant.Step 2
Drying is crucial-you can opt to dry in the sun-open air or shaded area depending on the plant’s variety.
Check out this post for more tips for drying your seeds.Step 3
Assess the seeds-only keep the best ones for selling.Step 4
Store your seeds safely and securely in air-tight containers in a semi-cool location to avoid re-germination.
The goal is to sell your seeds as quickly as possible allowing consumers to get the full advantage of their lifespan.
In a pinch you can refrigerate and even freeze your seeds to extend their shelf life.
This article offers additional suggestions on how to store your seeds for long term seed saving.
Packaging Your Seeds
How you package your seeds is almost as critical as the drying process.
Pick the wrong materials and you run the risk of your seeds germinating-making them useless and worth nothing.
Popular packaging for seeds include:
- Barrier-coated Paper Bags
- Barrier-laminated Film Bags
- Jute Bags
- PP Woven Bags
- Cotton Bags
Next it’s about the logo-graphics and branding of your packaging.
Labels and instructions.
People notice and expect deets as evidenced by this publication.
Something that pops.
Eye-catching that draws in the consumer.
How much do you want to spend?
How detailed you want to go depends on your selling strategy.
Who is your target market?
Do you plan to sell in bulk or small scale?
Determining this will set the stage for how much and how extravagant you need to go with your package design.
Let’s compare the two:Commercial
- Less emphasis on the aesthetic look and more about the convenience and quality of your seeds.
- Quality packaging remains imperative.
- Large packages-the best bang for their buck idea.
- Packaging is pivotal to standing apart from your competitors.
- High-quality material-labels-branding-the works.
No matter who you decide your target market is, you cannot cheap out on poor packaging, or you risk the quality of your seeds and potentially your reputation.
Here is an article outlining the importance of packaging and the role it plays in swaying consumer spending.
Once your seeds are packed up and ready to be sold it’s time to figure out the next big question:
Who are you selling your seeds to-and how ya going to do it?
How do you find people that want to buy your seeds?
Online-catalogs-selling to wholesale distributors.
You have options, but you need to determine the ideal fit for your production.
It comes down to trust and transparency.
People-distributors included-want to know that you are selling optimal seeds.
Let’s take a look at a few strategies outlined in detail in this post including:Marketing StrategiesWebsites & Blogs
Build a website with an order and payment portal.
Get testimonials and rave reviews from family and friends who have used your seeds to grow their produce.
Add a blog page to increase value to your audience and generate traffic.Social Media
Make social media your new BFF.
Post on Facebook Groups geared to gardening and growing your own vegetables.
Post pics of your operation on Instagram and Snapchat.E-Commerce Platform
Implement email marketing and consider a basic sales funnel for even better results.
These suggestions are geared to your small-scale hobby farms and homeowners growing food in their backyards.
These buyers are attracted to enticing packaging, growing instructions and unique plant species like hybrids-which we’ll go into more detail about soon.
Hit up grocers-garden centers and organic food stores in your community like those listed in this post and present a commission-style sales approach for additional exposure and revenue streams.
Selling in low quantities with small packets often results in higher profit margins compared to selling in bulk and is worth noting as you iron out your marketing campaign.
Think outside the box.
If you’re trying to garner local farmers’ attention, consider guerilla marketing or even billboards beside local highways.
There are countless options-from newspaper ads and farmers markets to free samples.
Lockdown lucrative business relationships with large-scale farmers and agricultural businesses.
These customers buy in bulk, and they represent a valuable source of potential income.
The key is to win them over.
You’ll need a creative and targeted marketing strategy based heavily on building connections and networking.
Most farmers within a geographical area naturally band together and establish close ties.
Because of the nature of agricultural businesses this only makes sense.
Farmers might need to borrow equipment for each other, trade livestock, or ask for general help.
And of course they might need to buy seeds from one another.
This is where you come in.
Establish friendly relations with your local farmers, and naturally promote your business.
Figure out which plants local farmers are considering and meet the demand.
Become their go-to seed distributor.
It takes time and some marketing-savvy techniques.
Network and provide value upfront and you will quickly gain trust and a reputation for being reliable with a stand-up operation.
Pricing Your Seeds
Break out your math skills.
Determine the costs associated with the process.
How much were your expenses?
You can’t make a profit if you don’t cover your costs.
Add in fertilizer-packaging-marketing-your time-etc.
What is the total value you need to recoup to cover all credits and still break even?
What profit margin are you aiming for?
Consider offering a lower introductory rate to gain customers, exposure, trust, and reputation.
But make this a short-term solution-a means to build a client base.
Alternately you price them competitively to portray value.
The ‘fake it ’til you make it’ metaphor.
There are five main pricing strategies to consider as per this post which include:Pricing Strategies 1
Cost Plus Pricing (profit goal minus costs)2
Competitive Pricing 3
Value-Based Pricing 4
Price Graze-start high and decrease as the market matures5
Penetration Pricing-start low and raise as you build your enterprise & reputation
Diversification is key.
Offer upsells and promos like combo packs-loyalty programs-etc.
Effective with the ability to increase your profit margins.
This article offers some additional insight into the advantages and styles of product diversification.
Much like variation with pricing it is essential to grow and sell an assortment of seeds.
Consumer trends change frequently and often with little to no notice.
Farmers rotate crops and distribute to meet demand.
Sometimes a type of seed just goes out of style.
This post outlines a few components behind the science of growing a variety of seeds that includes:The Importance of Variety 1
Government Policy & Support
Whatever the reason-if you want your seed enterprise to reap maximum profits and attract a wide range of customers-you need to offer choices.
Producing Seeds On A Large Scale
Currently, the global commercial seed market is worth an estimated $69 million.
With a projected CAGR of 9.09% by 2025 the industry will see market values exceeding $116 million.
Factors driving industry growth include consumer behavior, purchasing patterns, and disruptions to the supply chain.
We’ve concentrated primarily on small scale operations geared to homeowners and hobby farmers.
But what if you went bigger?
Deciding to scale your seed production business requires a different approach than what we have outlined above.
To streamline production-increase efficiency and mass-produce seeds for resale you need to get a lay of the land.
Understand who the big players are-companies like Monsanto–Syngenta Seeds and Agreliant Genetics as per this article.
You also need to be prepared to shell out significant cash for advanced technology and equipment.
Aside from your typical farming equipment like tractors and combines you will need specialized machinery mentioned in this post like:
- Machinery dedicated to separating the seed from the husk-shell or outer coating.
- Drying equipment to avoid re-germination and maintain high-caliber standards of seed production.
- Seed conditioning equipment.
- Specialized building for storage.
There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to large-scale seed production.
Do your research and complete your due diligence.
Talk to farmers.
Talk to successful seed business owners.
There is room for new players.
With only a few controlling the commercial seed industry farmers are nervous and looking for alternatives as evidenced in this publication.
Hybrid seeds play a fundamental role in the driving force behind the seed production market.
Hybrid is simply cross-pollinating two strains of a plant.
The goal of hybrids is to generate higher yields, better uniformity, disease resistance, and taste.
Known for their longer shelf-life hybrid seeds will continue to experience impressive growth as evidenced in this post.
Hybrid are combinations of two different sub-species.
Their genetic lineage has been stabilized to create a different sub-species.
All plants grown by humans are technically hybrids.
The plants we use today are derivatives of wild plants that were cross-bred and slowly modified by artificial selection, so finding a ‘pure breed’ is pretty rare.
These purebreds are referred to as ‘heirloom’ plants.
Ancient varieties that have been handed down from generation to generation, virtually unchanged over countless decades.
The most significant difference between hybrid and heirloom is yield.
Heirlooms can produce seeds by open-pollination-something that hybrid seeds cannot achieve as evidenced by this publication but don’t supply the yield ratios boasted by hybrids.
Despite the competition between heirloom and hybrid there remains an ever-increasing demand for hybrid seeds-specifically organic.
Factors propelling hybrid seed market growth as outlined in this post include:
- Stress Prevention (think environmental elements like insects-disease-etc.)
- Higher Crop Yields
- Performance Consistency
- Longevity for Transport
- Increased Population & Food Demand
- Rapid Development in Agriculture
- Upswing of a Health Conscious Population
Interested in the hybrid process?
You could breed new species of plants to attract attention from consumers.
A timely endeavor, you will need to ascertain if the effort is worth the monetary rewards.
Check out this article outlining the pros and cons of hybrid seeds.
Collaboration and Guest Post By Ippei
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