Sponsored By
indiana Prairie Farmer Logo

Price Soybean Seed By Seeds Per Pound, Not By UnitPrice Soybean Seed By Seeds Per Pound, Not By Unit

Companies vary in how many seeds per unit they are delivering.

Tom Bechman 1

August 22, 2013

2 Min Read

Todd Jeffries urges farmers to compare their soybean prices for 2014 vs. competitor's prices on the basis of cost per amount of seed, or overall cost per acre. Jeffries is the rep for Seed Consultants, Inc., in southeast Indiana.

The reason he urges companies to make that comparison is because they are the only company he's aware of that are packing or selling soybeans in units of 150,000 seeds per unit. Most are selling either 140,000 seeds per unit. Some competitors sell at 130,000 seeds per unit, and at the same time, recommend lower seeding rates.


The end result, Jeffries says, is that their price per unit for soybean seed may not always be the cheapest. But he believes they offer value if you consider how many seeds per unit you're getting, and plant by number of seeds per acre instead of pounds of seed per acre.

Here's an example. The prices used here are arbitrary and do not reflect actual prices set for 2014 by any company. Some companies have not yet set prices. The seed count per pound is also arbitrary. Actual seed count will vary by variety. In addition, Jeffries believes seed will likely be smaller in size than a year ago, when late rains pumped up seed size, even though yields were still below normal. This year yields may be normal or above, but with adequate rain all year, seed size may not be as big as last year for any given variety.

Suppose company A sells 130,000 seeds for $37. Company B sells 130,000 seeds for $40. Company C sells 150,000 seeds at $42. These are all priced before discount. You intend to seed 150,000 seed per acre.

If you buy from company A, your cost per acre will be $42.55. If you buy from company B, it will be $42.80. If you buy from company C, it's $42 per acre, the lowest of all by less than $1 per acre, even though their unit price was highest.

The bottom line is that it pays to calculate based on seeding rate before making buying decisions.

About the Author(s)

Tom Bechman 1

Editor, Indiana Prairie Farm

Tom Bechman is an important cog in the Farm Progress machinery. In addition to serving as editor of Indiana Prairie Farmer, Tom is nationally known for his coverage of Midwest agronomy, conservation, no-till farming, farm management, farm safety, high-tech farming and personal property tax relief. His byline appears monthly in many of the 18 state and regional farm magazines published by Farm Progress.

"I consider it my responsibility and opportunity as a farm magazine editor to supply useful information that will help today's farm families survive and thrive," the veteran editor says.

Tom graduated from Whiteland (Ind.) High School, earned his B.S. in animal science and agricultural education from Purdue University in 1975 and an M.S. in dairy nutrition two years later. He first joined the magazine as a field editor in 1981 after four years as a vocational agriculture teacher.

Tom enjoys interacting with farm families, university specialists and industry leaders, gathering and sifting through loads of information available in agriculture today. "Whenever I find a new idea or a new thought that could either improve someone's life or their income, I consider it a personal challenge to discover how to present it in the most useful form, " he says.

Subscribe to receive top agriculture news
Be informed daily with these free e-newsletters

You May Also Like