Featured Member of the Month – Holly Seed

Holly Seed logoOur Featured Member for July is Holly Seed, headquartered at 1967 W. 5th St. Holly Seed is in the business of research, development, and processing of the best varieties of sugarbeet seeds for the sugarbeet industry in the U.S. and Canada. (Sugar produced from sugarbeets represents about 50% of the total U.S. sugar production, with the balance coming from cane sugar.)

Holly Sugar was founded in 1905 in Holly, Colorado, near the Kansas border. By 1915 the expanding company built a factory in Sheridan, under the auspices of Sheridan Sugar Company, of which Holly Sugar was the main shareholder. Holly Sugar continued to build many other sugar factories in Wyoming and across the Western United States. It established an agricultural research station in Sheridan in 1936 on what is now 5th St. and all the surrounding land, for the development of new sugarbeet seed varieties to increase sugar content and yields.

In 1947 the Sheridan Sugar factory was dismantled and the building was transformed into a seed processing and storage facility for Holly Sugar’s seed business. And today Sheridan serves as headquarters for all of Holly Seed’s nationwide seed research and development.

Today Holly Seed is engaged in the research, seed production, seed processing, coating, and marketing and sales – of sugarbeet seeds. (Sugar produced from sugarbeets represents about 50% of the total U.S. sugar production, with the balance coming from cane sugar.)

Holly Seed has seed production facilities in Oregon and Washington. Once harvested, the seed is transported to the processing facility in Sheridan, in the big brick building located behind Ace Hardware/Ben Franklin on Coffeen Ave. There the seed is processed by very skilled and technical staff to provide the best seed available to the sugar growers around the country. Inside that building (which on the outside looks like an old abandoned building) is very specialized equipment designed specifically for producing a quality seed product. In recent years, Holly Seed has been shipping out over $20 million in seed on an annual basis!

Today sugarbeets are grown for sugar in Michigan, North Dakota, Minnesota, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, Nebraska, Idaho, Oregon, California, and in Canada in Alberta and Ontario. Holly Seed is active in most all of the growing areas, with research and sales teams.

There is much more than a person realizes to produce that teaspoon of sugar for your morning coffee. And Holly Seed has been part of that process for over 70 years, right here in Sheridan. www.hollyseed.com

The Chamber’s Business After Hours this month will be held at Holly Seed’s headquarters at 1967 W. 5th St. (across the street from the Sheridan County Club). Mark your calendar – Wednesday, July 18, 5:30-7:30 pm – for this opportunity to get more first-hand knowledge of this unique business in our community.

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