Farmer’s Business Network, Inc. (FBN®), the leading direct-to-farm ag tech platform and farmer network, announced the acquisition of Haplotech Inc., a Winnipeg-based market leading provider of research, technical and consulting services in seed breeding.
FBN Canada, a wholly-owned unit of FBN, is also purchasing the unique Canadian canola breeding program and pipeline of San Diego-based Cibus. As part of the agreement, Cibus has also provided FBN with a license to sell its canola Pod Shatter Reduction trait upon commercialization.
Combined, these acquisitions will help bring increased competition to the seed industry and represent the latest move by FBN to put Farmers First. FBN is also opening the door for unprecedented collaboration with other seed developers that need elite germplasm to enhance their own programs, and supporting independent developers with promising traits that have had, until now, no clear path to market.
“Bringing more competition and choice to the seed market, extending an invitation to the rest of the industry to collaborate on development, and providing a straight path to market is the latest way FBN is working to help farmers maximize their profits and improve ROI,” said Breen Neeser, Country Manager of FBN Canada. “These acquisitions also underscore FBN’s commitment to Canada, its farmers, and its rural economies.”
These acquisitions position FBN Canada to eventually commercialize canola seed, the second biggest crop in Canada and a market that has long been dominated by too few industry players.
The entire Haplotech team will become FBN Canada employees. In addition to its Winnipeg headquarters, Haplotech also has field capacity in Western Canada and in Chile. Haplotech Founder and President, Dr. Rale Gjuric, will lead FBN Canada’s Seed R&D team. Gjuric, a distinguished academic, previously served as the Director of the Plant Breeding Academy at the University of California, Davis, an institution renowned for its pioneering agricultural research.
“For too long canola farmers have been subject to industry consolidation leaving them with fewer choices,” said Gjuric. “We’re excited to join FBN Canada and provide a path to commercialize canola seed and bring Canadian farmers true market competition for their business.”
The acquisitions also highlight the innovative agricultural research being conducted in Winnipeg, which is considered the agricultural capital of Canada. Canola, a variety of rapeseed, was first developed at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg in the 1970s.
“We’re proud to support the Winnipeg economy and strengthen our relationship with this vital Canadian community,” says Neeser. “We look forward to bringing increased competition to the Canadian seed market and ensuring family farmers are always put first.”
Source: FBN news release