ORGANIC: Maryland farmer Shane Gregg.
ORGANIC: Maryland farmer Shane Gregg.

Farmers warned to ‘save seeds’ as demand skyrockets

FARMERS produce might be in higher demand than usual due to the coronavirus pandemic, but they are now facing a new problem.

Organic farmer Shane Gregg said while standard farmers are struggling with the demand of chemicals for growing purposes, organic farmers are experiencing a shortage of organic vegetable seeds.

“You can’t access organic seeds anywhere in the world right now,” Mr Gregg said.

“It doesn’t matter if you can’t access chemicals, because you won’t need them if you can’t get a crop in.”

He said he is fortunate enough to not be suffering from both shortages.

“The demand for chemicals isn’t affecting us because we are certified organic farmers.

“We do use chemicals, but they are natural and are made in Australia.

“So we have easy access to them.”

Mr Gregg’s farming season may be over, but his daughter Rebecca who runs a small organic farm on his property said the shortage of seeds is forcing her to go into ‘major seed saving mode’.

“We have noticed a big shortage of seeds at the moment,” Rebecca said.

With this in mind, Rebecca is now prioritising growing her own seeds.

“We have been saving a small amount of seeds from some of the plants that are easy to do so.”

It is a process that is beginning to pay off, with Rebecca accumulating seeds over the years of farming.

“If you are quite organised and have a good labelling system it is a good way to save them.

“Especially during this time when the demand to buy seeds is so high.”

Like many other items, vegetable seeds are now in higher demand than ever before, with everyone rushing to get their hands on them.

Thankful to be in the farming industry during this time, Rebecca is urging farmers to do the same as her and save as many seeds as possible.

“We are very grateful to be farmers right now.

“There are a lot of people who don’t have jobs.

“If you can save your seeds I high recommend doing so.”

She said she has also noticed the demand in organic produce rising.

“People are more conscious about what they are eating and what they are putting into their bodies.

“It is definitely becoming a more popular option.”

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