The State Government’s seed certification service, Seed Services Australia, will celebrate its 100th anniversary at a special lunch and tour of its Waite Campus laboratories today.
The Government of South Australia began providing a seed testing service in 1917. South Australia’s seed industry is the largest in volume and most diverse in the nation in terms of the number and range of species grown.
Based at the Waite’s Plant Research Centre, Seed Services Australia is part of Primary Industries and Regions SA and provides seed certification and seed testing services to the temperate pasture seed export industry for domestic and international markets.
They provide accurate, reliable and fast assessments on physical purity, weed seed content, germination percentage and many other seed tests important to growers, processors, marketers and exporters of seed.
Seed Services Australia offers three internationally accredited certification schemes:
- Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
- Association of Official Seed Certifying Agencies (AOSCA)
- Australian Seed Certification Scheme.
South Australia produces about 12,000 tonnes or 70% of Australia’s temperate certified pasture and forage seed annually, with a conservative economic value of approximately $210 million. About 9,000 tonnes (75%) of the state’s total seed crop is exported internationally, with Lucerne seed accounting for about 80% of this tonnage.
“Today, Seed Services Australia tests more than 10,000 seed samples and inspects more than 35,000 ha of planted seed crops from across southern and eastern Australia annually, as part of its acclaimed national seed certification and SureSeed programs,” said Minister for Regional Development Geoff Brock.
“I congratulate Seed Services Australia on its great achievements to date and I look forward to seeing the continued flow on benefits this service brings to our State’s economy.”
Minister for Agriculture, Food and Fisheries Leon Bignell also congratulated PIRSA and Seed Services Australia on this significant occasion “100 years is an amazing milestone – for a century they’ve played a vital role in protecting our crops and growing our State’s reputation for premium food and wine.
“Seed Services Australia is an internationally accredited and quarantine approved testing facility, and their fantastic work helps protect our crops from potentially devastating weed seeds, diseases and pests.”