Wensman Seed as we know it today produced, marketed and sold the Funk’s G Hybrids and Ciba Seeds brands for 55 years in North-Central Minnesota and North Dakota before introducing the Wensman Brand.
Wensman started selling the Funk’s G brand in 1942; and in 1989, transitioned to the Ciba Seeds brand after Ciba-Geigy acquired the Funk’s G label.
In 1997, the Ciba Seeds brand was merged into the NK brand as the result of a merger between Ciba-Geigy and Sandoz - both Swiss companies. The main purpose of the merger was for pharmaceutical gains, however both companies owned seed brands and the NK brand was the option of choice because of market share considerations.
Once the merger was completed and the Ciba brand dissolved, Wensman Seed announced the introduction of the Wensman brand to customers located in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota. When the Wensman brand was created, we knew we couldn’t be just another company selling seed. Our business model had to first and foremost provide growers with value. Knowing there wouldn’t be any second chances with a totally new brand, we had to do it right the first time.
We also recognized that trait technology would revolutionize the seed industry. We believed in 1997, as we still do today, that trait technology adds value to our genetics. The Wensman logo and brand strategy was developed on becoming a leader in trait technology in the Northern Cornbelt. “Seed Technology For Your Success” was the original mission statement developed when the Wensman Brand was introduced. The same mission statement is used today – appearing on all bags, advertising and company literature.
In 1998, Wensman introduced the first Bt technology to enter the market. Developed by Ciba-Geigy, this new Bt technology was called Event 176. Bt corn gained immediate farmer acceptance as they could visually see the positive results in the field by adding 5-10 bushels per acre in yield. In fact, 80% of Wensman’s sales volume that year had this exciting new Bt technology.
That very first year, the Wensman brand definitely accomplished it’s major goal of becoming a trait leader in the seed industry.
In 2000, AgReliant Genetics, LLC acquired Wensman with the intent of fast tracking the brand’s strategy of trait leadership. Staying true to AgReliant’s vision, Wensman immediately introduced the Monsanto corn traits Mon 810 (Bt) and Roundup Ready®, meeting high customer demand for these technologies.
In the early 2000’s, Wensman also introduced Roundup Ready® soybeans. A few years later, Wensman brought forth the first “triple stack” - rootworm corn protection stacked with Bt and Roundup Ready®. All of these past trait introductions have led up to the marketing and selling of our current corn trait line-up which includes Genuity® Smartstax® RIB Complete®, Genuity® VT Triple PRO® RIB Complete®, Genuity® VT Double PRO® RIB Complete® and Roundup Ready®; along with the Roundup Ready 2 Yield® soybean trait.
Since 1997, Wensman has earned the reputation in the seed industry as a cutting-edge company that leads the way to improved yields with new seed trait technologies.