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Mott Grain and Agronomy Co. produces certified greatness

Quality beers, pancakes, hummus and more require quality crops and equally high quality seeds. Mott Grain and Agronomy has been selling and producing high quality seed for 25 years.

Quality beers, pancakes, hummus and more require quality crops and equally high quality seeds. Mott Grain and Agronomy has been selling and producing high quality seed for 25 years. (M.C. Amick/The Dickinson Press)

Quality beers, pancakes, hummus and more require quality crops and equally high quality seeds. Mott Grain and Agronomy has been selling and producing high quality seed for 25 years.

Mott Grain and Agronomy Co. President/CEO Todd Kautzman described his business as a pristine company that has high expectations for quality.

“We raise and market certified seed. . . . We plant it, we grow it as a registered or a foundation seed and then we harvest it, clean it, condition it and then market it and sell it to other farmers for seed to raise," Kautzman said. "It’s seed we raise for farmers to grow."

Kautzman said his company sells only certified seeds which according to a document from North Dakota State University, are required to meet rigorous standards of purity and quality.

“All certified seed must pass field inspection, be conditioned by an approved seed conditioning plant, and then be sampled and pass laboratory testing before it can be sold as certified seed,” the document states.

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Buying certified seeds has been linked to not only higher yields but greater long-term savings for growers due to the lack of weed seeds and thereby lessening the demand for buying herbicides, according to a survey conducted by a Utah extension agent.

“It’s a new variety. Every year there’s a new variety, there’s better traits for better yields and better disease control," Kautzman said.

Mott Grain and Agronomy Co., sells only certified seeds, Kautzman said, explaining that buyers are guaranteed they are spending their money on a trusted product from a reputable producer. Kautzman said this applies to all sellers of certified seeds, not just his own business.

The company's certified seeds come in a variety of crops such as flax, green and yellow peas, chickpeas and Mott Grain’s best seller, wheat.

Mott Grain and Agronomy Co. are WestBred, LLC and Meridian seed retailers, Kautzman said.

Currently, Mott Grain and Agronomy Co. have completely sold out of seed, which has left Kautzman greatly surprised considering the current drought western North Dakota is experiencing, which he said has been unlike anything he’s seen in previous years.

“We typically have good fall moisture . . . (with) rain in the late fall and snow cover over the winter. Our last measurable rain was last October," Kautzman said. "This is the driest fall-winter I’ve ever seen.”

For Kautzman, business has remained the same over the past year, despite a global pandemic-induced economic downturn. Kautzman said his business has not been affected by COVID-19.

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Kautzman’s company serves around 30 growers. Working with growers is something Kautzman especially enjoys about his work along with growing food for the world. North Dakota is the largest producer of durum wheat in the United States, which is often exported to Italy for pasta making.

Southwestern North Dakota is nationally renowned for its high quality wheat production, he added.

“Right here around Dickinson-Mott, around this southwest corner of the state, we raise the highest quality. Our wheat that our growers raise . . . goes all over the world. It’s the highest quality wheat there is,” Kautzman noted.

Kautzman said he looks forward to the future with a possible growing number of certified seed growers on the near-distant horizon due to changing trends within the industry. Kautzman said that he predicts drastic changes within the next two to five years in so far as the demand for certified seed is concerned and an increased demand for certified wheat varieties.

For those interested in participating in the bright future of Mott Grain and Agronomy Co., call Mott Grain and Agronomy Co. at 701-260-2458.

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(M.C. Amick/The Dickinson Press)

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(M.C. Amick/The Dickinson Press)

Caleb Amick is a former reporter for The Dickinson Press.
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