Bird Seed Sales Soar - - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Bird Seed Sales Soar


A white snow blanket has covered up quite a bit of the food wildlife depend on.
With little to eat, many of you are heading to stores to buy a little extra nourishment for those birds.
Reporter Sarah Gustin explains just how popular bird seed sales have been.

Millions of pounds of bird seed are flowing out of this store every year.
"We make the bird seed here, we do ship out in semi loads throughout the United States, lot of our big trade area is east and south east. although I do have an outlet going west with birdseed. And then we do some new crop contracts early in the year for crush." 
At Hubbard Feeds in Bismarck, 85% of their sunflower supply goes into the bird seed market.
Manager Steve Hepper says they sold roughly 32 million pounds of bird seed last year.
While some stays local, 95% of that goes out across the nation.
"It's been a growing business. there is getting to be more and more people involved and more buyers out there. The users are picking up quite a bit also." 
But he says sales have also continued to increase here in the Bismarck area.
"People like to feed birds, and they will always have money to feed birds. To go buy a bag of birds, simply amusement of watching birds outside your window." 
Hepper says sunflowers, safflowers, millet, crack corn and cracked wheat are the main ingredients in many of their bird seed blends.
He says due to an early autumn snow storm he hasn't seen much of one of those ingredients come through the door.
"There's been a significant decrease in the pounds that have come in at harvest because of the early storm that came through and complications and the yield loss from the storm. The sunflowers that stayed standing were dry, but when they had to go pick the ones up off the ground, they ran into a moisture problem. So there's some still in the bins with moisture problems that need to be dried before we can put them into the bird seed."
Hepper says some sunflowers are even still out in the field.

Hepper says bird seed is a year round business, with winter being the busiest time.


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