The Danish Seed Council
The Danish Seed Council was established in 1973. The Council represents the professional interests of producers of grass, clover and horticultural seeds. The Danish Seed Council is financed by a levy of 0.2 per cent of the seed grower’s payment from the contracting company.
The Council is a non-governmental private and independent organization. The Council consists of two members:
- The Danish Seed Association (seed companies)
- The Danish Seed Growers' Association
The Danish Seed Council is a member of – and has offices at – The Danish Agriculture & Food Council.
The Danish Seed Council represents their views through the membership of Euroseeds and ISF.
The main tasks of the Danish Seed Council are:
- To promote the professional interests of the Danish seed sector within the regulatory framework of national legislation and EU regulations.
- To coordinate and assist in the overall Research & Development activities of the Danish seed sector.
- To be the platform for relevant information about the seed sector.
- To support the interests of the seed sector across the agricultural value chain.
- To be the secretariat for the Danish Seedfund allocated to R & D in the seed sector.
Denmark is a leading producer of grass seeds, clover seeds and horticultural seeds. Danish seed growers produce 50 % of total EU production of grass seeds. For horticultural seeds, such as Spinach, approx. 75 % of hybrid seeds are produced in Denmark.
Danish seed production dates back several generations, and, over the years, growers and seed companies have gained detailed knowledge and considerable expertise in seed production. Furthermore, the Danish climate favors the production of seed.
Grass and clover seeds are used for the following three purposes:
- Clover grass or pure grass blends for animal feed, in particular cattle (grazing or silage) or horses, sheep etc.
- Professional use of lawn seed grasses for golf courses, sports facilities and grass verges.
- Private home lawns.
The widespread use of grass and clover requires constant development of new varieties with improved properties, such as better tolerance to drought, shade, moist soil and resistance to diseases. Among the characteristics of livestock feed grass are high feed quality, improved digestibility and good growth. The important properties of lawn grasses are appearance, wear resistance, shoot density and color.
All production of clover and grass seeds is certified and controlled by the Danish Authorities according to the EU Seed Marketing Directives.
The major crops are Perennial Ryegrass, Red Fescue, Kentucky Bluegrass, and other ryegrasses and fescues. Also White clover is a major seed crop.
The average yearly production of grasses covers a total of 80.000-90.000 hectares. The production of clover accounts for about 4.000 hectares and horticultural seed crops account for around 9.000 hectares per year.
95 % of the total production of grass, clover and horticultural seeds is exported to approx. 100 countries. Exports represent an annual value of € 300-400 million.