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(Clinton, WI) Dennis Hines, Gazette / Walworth County Today 

Josh Tracy said independence has been the key to his company’s growth during the past few years.

One of the few family-run seed operations left in the Stateline Area, Tracy Seeds, located on Wisconsin Highway 140 north of Clinton, distributes seeds throughout Wisconsin and to Illinois, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Michigan, North Dakota and South Dakota.

"From last year to this year, I would say our business has about tripled," Tracy said. "We’ve experienced modest growth during the last six years."

Tracy attributes that growth to being independent from larger agricultural companies, which allows his business to develop a close relationship with its clients.

"We’re an independent company," Tracy said. "Any of our customers can talk to us directly. We’re more accessible to the customers than the bigger companies are."

Tracy Seeds manufactures and distributes soybeans, corn, wheat and alfalfa.

"Those are our four main ones. We also have oats," Tracy said. "We produce all of our soybeans. Most of our corn is produced in a four-state area, but we do all of the packaging here. All of the wheat is grown on our land as well as the packaging. The oats are outsourced and packaged here."

Tracy Seeds offers seed conditioning for soybeans, wheat and oats. Tracy said his company also obtains products for clients that are not available onsite.

"We’re a one-stop shop for any agricultural operator," Tracy said. "If we don’t have it, we’ll find it. We’ll have pretty much anything someone would ask for."

The seeds are harvested in the fields, cleaned, treated and packaged before being distributed. Tracy said it takes about half a day to get a semi-truck load of seeds ready for distribution. Some of the technology that is used includes a cleaner, gravity table to separate the grains, bagging equipment, treater and grater.

"We package our seeds in bulk and all the way down to small bags," Tracy said.

Tracy Seeds is operated on about 2,800 acres of land and includes a 28,000-square-foot warehouse. The business includes 11 full-time employees and district managers in Illinois and Minnesota.

The company was started in 1934 by Tracy’s grandfather. Tracy said the seed distribution operation was stopped in 1986 and started back up in 2004.

"There’s a little bit of a history gap for the seed company, but the farm operation has always been here," he said.

Tracy said he has enjoyed being involved with the family business.

"It’s a real challenge, but I find it enjoyable," Tracy said. "It keeps me busy. I enjoy the people who I work with. I like what I do."

Tracy said he hopes that his children will take over the family operation.

"We hope someone takes it over some day," Tracy said. "I have two boys, but they’re young. I hope they want to do this later on in life. My oldest son is 11, so he’s a little too young to do this yet."

For more information about Tracy Seeds, call 608-752-2767 or go to

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