Seed Bank Magazine
Seed Bank Industry Drama

Seed Bank Industry Drama

During the 2019 Seed Bank of the Year and Seed Bank Professionals Awards we knew we would catch some criticism. We spent the prior year planning and researching the best possible ways to run an online contest for the seed bank industry specifically. If you are not currently involved in this industry, you may be asking why we’d need to do anything different than any other online contest or ballot. If you are part of this industry, you know exactly why any sort of seed bank election would need to be planed with the utmost scrutiny.

The most substantial dilemma in the planning process was choosing a voting system that would satisfy the needs of the people. We knew that processing the votes in-house would only provide the seed banks and seed bank professionals an option to question the legitimacy of the whole election. We decided to hire an outside agency to handle all of the votes to ensure the legitimacy of the whole event. We knew that we’d need to announce the election well in advance. We contacted all of the seed banks we knew of and explained to them the rules and timeframe of the election so that they’d have time to prepare for the vote in advance.

After notifying the seed banks and seed bank professionals in advance we received a lot of positive response. Many of the seed banks were impressed with the system we were using and were happy to participate. There were only two seed banks that did not respond in a timely manner. One of these two seed banks ended up responding to us right before the voting started while the other seed bank did not get back with us until during the middle of the voting time frame. The seed bank who got in touch with us right before the voting started said they had recently been really busy and that they’d be sure to participate next year. The other seed bank told us that they thought our voting system was not a good idea and then recommended we shut it down because it would likely end with unfavorable results.

Success

The elections ended up being even more successful than we originally planned for and there were more than eight times the votes we had expected for the Seed Bank of the Year Awards. We received and distributed thousands of seeds during this election in addition to having a really enjoyable experience. Because the votes were not in our hands, the seed banks and seed bank professionals had no animosity against us. We set up the election to consist of a number of different categories so that even though only one seed bank would win it all. the other seed banks that won in their respective categories would receive notable exposure for the things they did best. We cannot say we weren’t worried though. Our biggest concern was that one seed bank would dominate the election and end up winning most of the categories, making us look like we were favoring someone (even though the votes were handled externally). We knew that even though we hired a 3rd party to handle and process all votes, that someone would still look for ways to act negatively or just be a sore loser. We were surprised when we only had a few concerns from people who didn’t read the rules or had issues understand the voting system. After they were updated on the election, they were extremely supportive. Even the seed banks. The rest of the problems you can read about further down.

Every seed bank and every seed bank professional knew the deal and understood that the whole election depended on their supporters and customers. We had one seed bank that flat-out ignored all of the information, rules and data we presented to them and insisted that they were the best seed bank (and that our voting system was flawed). We cannot say for sure, but we believe that they wanted us to count their own website reviews as votes instead of using our system. We all know that website reviews are somewhat controlled by the websites themselves. Even the big review platforms have ways to hide, remove or alter crap reviews. It is a proven fact that more consumers trust external reviews of ecommerce businesses than anything else. And good amount of consumers know which platforms you can pay to use and how they can be manipulated by the business owners. Just run a quick search through Bing or Google for stats and comparisons done.

On top of it all, we realized that each seed bank really believed that they were the best in the biz. Any other conclusion that the votes came to would be false in their eyes and even possibly cause them to attack us for thinking we were favoring someone else (even though we weren’t running the elections). There were two seed banks who initially reacted negatively to the results but it was only because they had forgotten we were using an external service. One of those two seed banks continued to deny the results were true and just kept repeating to us that they were the best and that there was no way that they didn’t win.

Funny Accusations

Even with all of the precautions we took, we were now plagued with an even more obtuse accusation. One that we never saw coming. After one of the seed banks found out their employee didn’t win one of the Seed Bank Industry Professionals Awards, they accused us of being owned by one of their former employees that just happened to win two Seed Bank Industry Professionals Awards. Their belief was that this one person owned Seed Bank Magazine and chose himself to win two awards. We later verified (through paystubs) that the person in question currently worked for four different seed banks, three other ecommerce web sites (not in the seed bank industry) and was also an independent contractor for another major online company. Why did we need to verify this person’s work history? Because someone from the same seed bank that was making accusations told us this person in question didn’t really work for one of the companies he said he worked for. It was quite easy to figure out once we knew which department to contact and even easier to verify with his W2 and pay stubs. Some of the seed banks he worked for didn’t even participate. The seed banks he worked for that did participate won in only one of the categories in the Seed Bank of the Year Awards and wasn’t even in the running for overall Seed Bank of the Year.

Seed Bank Magazine is 75% owned by a much larger farming news source. The other 25% of SBM is owned by a worldwide non-profit organization (a “Club”). Most importantly, SBM is the only stake in the cannabis, hemp and seed bank industries that the owners hold. Roll that up into a joint and smoke it!

And that wasn’t all. Earlier in the voting timeline we were also accused of being owned by one of the other seed banks that participated in this years elections and didn’t even win in any categories.

Another accusation we had was with one of the nominees in one of the categories for the Seed Bank Industry Professionals Awards. We were accused of being owned by the seed bank the nominee worked for. This same seed bank accused of owning us later accused us of doing the same thing with someone else. We requested proof of employment from one individual and found out they didn’t even work for the seed bank in question. We did the same for the other person involved, but they declined to provide us with any details. We made these requests to try and prove to each accuser that this was not some crazy conspiracy. It just made them both look stupid, because we are not owned by a seed bank or anyone who works for any seed bank. You see what we have to put up with?

The last accusation was that the 3rd-party voting service we used was being partial to one of the seed banks (for some reason), This voting system agency we hired had never previously worked in any of the cannabis or seed bank industries. The accusation was made by another seed bank who has since then “lightened up”.

It All Came Down To…

The final results came down to happy customers and supporters. Happy customers and supporters of seed banks and seed bank professionals who actually let their fans know that there was a vote. If you didnt make your candidacy known, how would you expect to have a fair chance? Next year, make sure you announce your candidacy for the Seed Bank of the Year and Seed Bank Industry Professionals.

What We Learned

We learned a lot about the seed bank owners and how they operate. We got a better understanding of some of their positive and negative attitudes and we found out which seed banks thought they could buy us off or threaten us into helping them. We found out that there are a couple of seed banks who will try and bully or threaten us into getting their way. They found out that they couldn’t. We also found out that some seed banks will threaten you with legal actions if you allow people to leave reviews on your website that they don’t like.

All in all, 95% of the participants were understanding.

It has been a fun way to start 2020..

UPDATE: 4/7/202

We also has a seed bank owner tell us that Seed Bank Magazine was stupid because it covered a “bullsh*t niche” (ie: seed banks)… Which is pretty ironic 😉

We have been hit with many DDOS attacks and even more attempts to hack into our website since the awards ended this year. Guess we are doing something right.

Pat Patrick

Pat is SBM's Chief Editor. He makes the magic happen. Pat is a Dead Head and gypsy. He followed The Dead for years before settling down in Canada where he then spent the next decade moving seeds back and forth from Canada to the US. In his travels, he's worked at dispensaries and seed banks all over the globe. Pat worked in Canada at two of the most well-known seed banks before making his way to Santa Cruz.

Before Pat started working at Seed Bank Magazine, he was tasked with creating two new seed bank operations in the US from two overseas seed banks that wanted a piece of the American dream. Those two seed banks are still thriving to this day and currently sell more seeds than almost anyone else in the nation.

To those of you in the seed bank industry, you might know Pat by his nickname "Splat".

15 comments

 


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  • You should do a story on the brands/breeders that are actually partially owned and controlled by seed bank owners. You would be surprised at what you find… I know for a fact that one of the seed bank owners is a silent partial owner of a few big brands. Then they use words like “exclusive” to throw you off.

  • Comment Deleted

    Please do not post any further negative comments about any seed banks or seed bank owners/employees here.

  • Seeds here now had to be the whiner. They think they are the best and they really try hard to control any and all publicity about them. They treat us smaller seed banks like we are nobody’s. The owner of seeds here now is obsessed with himself and how he wants to be perceived. His best friend that runs their social media is the same type of person but is more of a wannabe. Seeds here now is ran by punks. The only reason they are popular is because they go to all the events and they bribe/sponsor all their publicity.

    • Douchebags running their mouths. Slow your role shn. Operations manager is a glorified secretary and a compulsive liar. I knew the operations lady when she was just an assistant secretary and she got her good friend fired and then 2 more people fired. I aint gonna buy seeds from people like that. Bad people.

    • Which seed bank are you? “Novelty Seeds” seems to be more of a generic term than a seed bank name. Does your username (used here) reflect an actual seed bank businness, or are you just trying to be anonymous?

  • Who were the seed banks acting like spoiled little rich kids?

    It doesn’t matter how much time and energy you put into making a contest fair for everyone. There are always one or two seed banks that will cry about it. If God herself came down and ran the awards, some seed banks would still question everything. They won’t support it unless they can manipulate it in some way and that’s the truth.

    • You really have to ask…..

      SBM: Where is the forum you guys? We need a forum. A forum where we can go and talk about this stuff. Emailed you details for a great forum software to use

  • so what? so two people working at the same place win in a category and the whole contest gets bombarded with negative feedback? did it ever occur to anyone these two pros are the best and work at the same place? just means that they have an outstanding team and nothing else. what, just because they dont have a hand in your business means that you are not legitimate? they want to control you and are pissed that you wont let them. simple as that. the seed banks only support the news sources, youtube channels and other brands that they know they can get something out of. why else would they pay to support them. they dont just get ads when they pay, they get a little control.

    • No. And we don’t need to. We are just expressing what happened and we don’t want to promote any negativity towards anyone. People change and so do businesses. With this article we hoped to spread awareness and not “hatred”.

  • Enough drama to dedicate a whole page to is sad. I don’t want to buy cannabis seeds from people who treat eachother like this. Buying from these big banks just allows these so-called “businessmen” to continue on like this. Rewarding stupid behavior is just rewarding stupid behaviour. It will never end. Do you have a forum in your future? I would support it.

  • The seed banks themselves can be really great but the owners seem to always be weirdos. They portray themselves as these cannabis seed kings when they are really only a poor man’s aficionado. Look at all the small businesses out there and how many of them are bigger than the biggest seed bank. These seed bank owners are just glorified business owners and that is how they portray themselves. They are just salesmen and nothing more. The breeders are the real kings but cannot sell the seeds themselves because of these bigger seed banks. Do you want to shop at the walmart of seed banks? Go ahead. Support the breeders by buying direct.

    I mean really.. Who cares about the seed banks? The breeders are the ones that should get all the credit. Seed bank magazine is the first to dive into the seed bank only news industry and I respect them for that. But you guys should stick to the smaller seed banks and the breeders who sell their own seeds. These walmart type seed banks are making a killing off the breeders while they attempt to control the price of seeds.

    The breeders need to be unionized so that they can get a fair piece of the game. Right now, the seed banks are trying to sell themselves as already having a monopoly on the industry when they are really only using their weight to push around the breeders who won’t submit to their demands. Things like ‘threatening legal actions’ and ‘takedowns’ for real reviews that they have no control over is the same thing big businesses have been doing for years.

    If you really care about the industry, go to the events and buy direct. Don’t support these huge seed banks that control only what they want you to see.

    G-Dank

    • I see where you are coming from but I think there is still a great need for the bigger seed banks (for the breeders that don’t want to be salesman). In a perfect world, each breeder would sell their own seeds and make great money. But this world is far from perfect. The bigger seed banks are sometimes the only way for the breeders to make money selling their seeds.

      As for the drama, just brush it off and move on. Nobody is worth the mental and physical stresses needed for hatred. If you let anyone bug you for more than a week, that person now owns you. There will always be those people who will never let down and will insist they are right all the way to the grave.

      And in regards to the article, life is too short to worry about who screwed one person over more than the other, who was more or less right, or anything else for that matter.

      Karma is real.

Pat Patrick

Pat is SBM's Chief Editor. He makes the magic happen. Pat is a Dead Head and gypsy. He followed The Dead for years before settling down in Canada where he then spent the next decade moving seeds back...

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