The Seed Treatment market was valued at USD 5,615.6 million in 2020, and it is estimated to reach USD 9,577.0 million by 2026, registering a CAGR of 9.1%, during the forecast period (2021-2026).
Agricultural sectors have been partially affected due to the COVID-19 pandemic in the initial days of outbreak, but agricultural chemicals and fertilizers, which are import dependent, have seen supply disruptions. Preventive measures and initiatives were taken to ensure supply. China being the major producer of agricultural chemicals, disruptions to production would have a ripple effect on North American supplies of crop protection inputs, including seed treatment.
Seed treatment plays an important role in protecting the seeds and seedlings from seed and soil-borne diseases and insect pests affecting crop emergence and its growth. The adoption of this practice by farmers across the world requires effective extension strategies making the appropriate chemical pesticides/bio-pesticides and equipment available to farmers besides making them aware of methods of seed treatment, post-treatment handling of seeds, and planting materials.
To make seed treatment methods popular among the farmers, various governments are organizing nationwide campaigns and promoting bills that will enable farmers to receive pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides at a subsidized price. Hence, the increasing government support is likely to boost the growth of the seed treatment market in the coming years.
Key Market Trends
Increasing Cost of High Quality Seeds
High costs associated with hybrids and genetically modified seeds are a major factor driving the growth of the seed treatment market globally. Seed treatment is being increasingly considered by farmers as a mode to protect investments made on good quality seeds due to an increase in regulatory issues relating to fumigation, as well as foliar application of pesticides.
Furthermore, the cost of seeds is expected to increase, owing to an increase in the demand for high-quality seeds with desirable agronomic traits. Both companies and farmers are ready to spend on seed treatment solutions in order to save high-quality seeds.
According to the USDA estimates of 2017, corn seeds cost about 300% since 1995, while the yield grew by only 35%. Framers are trying to cut down operating costs by selecting seeds that do not require multiple doses of chemicals. The initial protection of these engineered seeds is ensured by using seed treatment products. In the past seven years, the seed’s portion of total operating costs for corn has increased from about 28% to 32%. Even though there was a drop in operating costs of corn between 2015-2016, the seed cost share of corn increased by 2%.
As the most of the GM seeds are costly and are treated with biological and chemical treatments, and there is an increase in area under GM crops, which is positively affecting the seed treatment market growth.
Europe Dominates the Seed Treatment Market
Europe witnessed the highest share in the seed treatment market and Spain has the largest market for seed treatment, followed by France, Germany, and Russia. Growing popularity of agriculture in the region, along with the need for better quality seeds, are the major reasons for the growth of the market. In major crops such as cereals (corn, barley, etc.) and fodder plants (alfalfa, clover, rapeseed, etc.), seed treatments are essential to prevent against anthrax diseases such as decayand bare smut. Moreover, seed treatments can also aid early growth of the crop. Thus, it was observed that the seed treatments based on manganese and zinc, which stimulate the root system of the plant, are gaining popularity in the region.
Furthermore, In 2020, the sugar beet growers in the Spain experienced crop damage and decrease in yields by virus yellows. It created a serious concern among the farmers, and they have launched a plea to let them use Cruiser SB neonicotinoid treatment, in order to reduce crop damage, which was later approved by the government. Therefore, the increasing insect and pest attacks, the need of the growers to save the crop, and increasing yields is driving the growth of the market in the region.
According to a study, it was observed that for every extra one euro spent on this seed, relative to conventional seed, farmers gained an additional EUR 4.95 in extra income. These income gains have mostly come due to higher yields from the use of improved techniques, including seed treatments, which are influencing the growth of the market.
The seed treatment market is consolidated with several big players, like Syngenta International AG, Bayer CropScience AG, BASF SE, Corteva Agri Science, Croda International PLC. Major players in the market offers a diverse and increasing product portfolio. Companies are focusing majorly on new product launches, mergers, and acquisitions, which help in increasing their market shares. The development of bio-based seed treatment products has a massive potential for expansion during the forecast period, with advantages, like environmental sustainability and lesser regulations for development, and launch of new products.
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