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Elsoms Steps Up to Scottish Challenge

Elsoms Seeds, the UK’s leading independent seed specialists and plant breeders, has signed an agreement with the Scottish Government for pre-commercial trials on tree seed, achieved through the CivTech Challenge. Tasked with improving the quality of tree seed used within its forestry industry, Elsoms successfully demonstrated to Forestry and Land Scotland that its proven treatments and technologies have great potential for significantly improving tree seed performance.

In 2019, Scotland became the first country in the world to declare a climate emergency. The Scottish Government set out to tackle climate change by 2030 with the creation of 3000 to 5000 hectares of new woodland each year, with the aim of storing another 1 million tonnes of CO2 through woodland creation.

As part of the Scottish Government’s Digital Directorate, CivTech brings together public sector expertise and private sector creativity, culminating in the CivTech Demo Day held in Edinburgh. Elsoms’ Technical Manager, Phillip Ayres presented to an audience of 500 government officials, investors and nursery owners. Elsoms’ proposal showed how seed treatments and technologies already being used in the vegetable industry would increase the quality and germination of tree seed.

CivTech Demo Day

“Through the use of innovation and a level of specialism that is unrivalled, our team have been able to advise on the most effective strategy to improve tree seed quality” said Phillip Ayres, Technical Manager at Elsoms. “This ensures that there is a continual improvement at each stage, delivering the highest quality seed.”

Planning for pre-commercial trials is now underway, in partnership with Forestry and Land Scotland. By using treatments that include bio stimulants, biologicals and bio nutrients, as well as seed priming technology, Elsoms have started to unlock the potential of several different tree species. This reduces the dependency on just a handful of species and helps increase the biodiversity of Scottish woodlands.

“We know how important this challenge is to Scotland, and indeed to our whole planet” added Elsoms’ Chairman, Roger Keeling. “As the market leading specialists in seed treatment within the UK, applying our technology to tree seed is a natural progression.”