News and Events

Grain and Seed update

Mark Elliotte, Farmlands’ General Manager – Grain and Seed, reflects on the successes of the season.


Mark ElliotteFollowing the volatile weather across the country prior to Christmas, the arable harvest and autumn sowing season is now upon us. The Farmlands Grain and Seed team is ready to assist you with your autumn agronomy needs – whether it is buying or selling grain or seed, assistance with selecting your autumn arable or forage seed variety, chemical product, fertiliser requirements or managing your spring sown crops.


Products to focus on sowing this autumn:

  • All ryegrass varieties included in the FVI 5 Star category
  • AR37 ryegrasses
  • Morrow or Relish red clover
  • Cereal seed


Farmlands publishes a Seed Buyers’ Guide every 2 years and this year, in addition to the printed guide, I am excited to introduce our Farmlands Seed Buyers’ Guide app. The app is the first of its kind and is a revolutionary new tool that provides seed variety information at your fingertips, quickly and easily. The information contained in the app comes from a central seed variety cloud database. This allows the app to be automatically updated with the latest information, such as new seed varieties. Our Seed Buyers’ Guide app also works without internet coverage, which is essential to enable on-farm use. As well as comprehensive information on more than 200 seed varieties, the app features a section on weed and pest identification and a sowing mix rate calculator. Users can also add seed varieties to an enquiry form that is sent directly to the Farmlands Grain and Seed team. The Farmlands Seed Buyers’ Guide app is available to download now from the Apple App Store and Google Play.

 Another success for the Farmlands Grain and Seed team in 2018 was attaining nationwide coverage with our Agronomists. We have an experienced team of agronomy experts available to assist you with all of your agronomy and farm system needs.


Following the retirements last year of two of our Grain Traders, Gary Mitchell and Clayton Howard, we welcomed Michael Bennet (based in Invercargill) and Carmel Burgess (based in Ashburton) to the Grain Trading team – joining Sarah Watson (based in Ashburton) and I. Michael and Carmel both have considerable arable industry experience and trading expertise from previous roles as Senior Arable Technical Field Officers at Farmlands, as well as previous roles with other grain and seed merchants.

Carmel BurgessMichael BennetSarah Watson

Elton Mayo (based lower North Island) has been appointed as the North Island Lead Agronomist and will manage the North Island Agronomists. Rachael Robinson (based Canterbury) has been appointed to the South Island Lead Agronomist role to lead the South Island team. They both have vast forage and arable agronomy knowledge and industry experience and are well respected in the agricultural sector.

A number of Agronomists joined us during 2018 – Brian Cornish (central North Island), Guy Mason (northern North Island), Huw Murray (Otago) and Matt Smith (North Canterbury). They join Sam Lucas (northern South Island), Phil Johnston (Canterbury), Tim White (Canterbury/Southland) and Dave Schrader (South Canterbury/Otago/ Southland). Our Agronomists all have a wide range of agronomy experience and expertise and are available in their respective regions to assist with your seed, chemical and fertiliser needs in variety or product selection, crop establishment, management and use.

The Farmlands Grain and Seed team can help you with all of your agronomy needs. Contact your Farmlands Technical Field Officer or the team at your local Farmlands store today for further information about our agronomy services.