Getting to Know Sakata Seed America


A great deal of hard work goes into creating varieties that are outstanding enough to bear the Sakata name. When we do create them, we want to make sure you hear all about it. This would be impossible without the sales and marketing team.

The sales and marketing team understands that making decisions about which products to sell or grow can sometimes be daunting. Customers need to have all of the facts on hand to make an informed decision. The sales and marketing team provides information in a way that is easy to understand and access so customers can make an informed decision.

Product and Area Sales Managers

Product managers help develop market-leading varieties and share the varieties’ attributes with growers, dealers, and produce industry representatives. Managers evaluate the performance of experimental varieties in the field, compare them with that of existing commercial varieties, and then make suggestions about which ones to advance to the commercial phase. “The whole process includes soliciting the input of dealers and growers so all decisions correspond to customer needs and preferences,” says Atlee Burpee, Eastern sales manager and Senior Eastern product manager for Sakata Seed America.

“Managers act as a conduit for crop information, starting from the breeder to the sales team to the distributor to the grower and eventually to the consumer,” says Burpee. Here, Burpee (in front) discusses baby leaf spinach with Dan Graiff at his NJ farms.

Product managers also act as liaisons or advocates for particular crops by sharing their expertise with those inside and outside of the company. “Managers act as a conduit for crop information, starting from the breeder to the sales team to the distributor to the grower and eventually to the consumer,” says Burpee. Product managers work closely with the area sales managers, and sometimes, as in Atlee Burpee’s case, work both jobs.

Area sales managers deliver our product message to our direct customers—our dealers. They have to be experts on our product line. Working closely with product managers provides them with the knowledge and expertise they need to educate our customers. Managers must find out not only what products customers are interested in, but also the challenges their growers face when growing different varieties. Then they can make product recommendations based on customers’ unique needs.

Marketing Communications Team

The marketing communications team provides promotional and educational material in the form of brochures, catalogs, informative articles and product information sheets. They keep information on the website up-to-date and make sure that it relates to customers’ needs. Each year, Sakata sponsors several key events for growers and dealers. Team members support these events by providing the materials needed to get the word out on Sakata’s newest products. The marketing communications team makes connections on the retail and consumer level. Keeping track of current consumer trends gives them valuable insights that they can pass on to product and area sales managers, as well as the research and development department.

100 Years of Quality, Reliability and Service

Sakata has a reputation for longevity and stability. Next year, we celebrate 100 years in the seed industry. More than that, we celebrate a long tradition of helping you grow your business by providing quality products and outstanding service. The sales and marketing team is a critical part of making that happen. To read more about our Centennial, click here.