Family Farm Innovation

When the bottom fell out of the alfalfa seed market three years ago, it delivered a devastating one-two punch to Jed and Kathy Williams of Imperial, Saskatchewan. Two key sources of income for their central Saskatchewan farm — the alfalfa seed business itself and the leafcutter bees (which are an important contributor to seed production) — were hit hard. The value of both of those products the Williams family marketed across North America tanked almost overnight. It placed them in a tough spot. They had invested so much time, money and energy over the previous 15 years into building an alfalfa seed business with the complimentary leafcutter bee operation and suddenly the markets had either disappeared or were significantly reduced, and prices had hit rock bottom. What were they to do?
“We’re doing something that we love and also working to build a sustainable and profitable farm business as well.
…It has been a tremendous opportunity to be able to market our bees and seed through the Peavey Mart retail chain.” See Full Article 
Story by Lee Hart.


Connected to the Land Magazine

Western Producer Article

Brian Cross photo

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Jed and Kathy Williams, leafcutter bee and alfalfa seed producers from Imperial, Sask., stand in their warehouse that contains 9,000 nesting boards filled with bee larvae. This winter, the couple will extract more than 100 million larvae, which will be packaged and sold or incubated and used as pollinators on the Williams farm.

On the Farm: Sask. couple weathers downturn in alfalfa seed business while expanding their leafcutter bee operation

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