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Confection sunflowers are grown to meet processors’ specific needs for the in-shell snack market. With a thicker hull than oilseed sunflowers, confection sunflower seed is typically larger, longer and lighter in test weight. A familiar snack, characteristically large with white stripes. Generally, over half an inch in length, half their weight comes from the kernel.
They are planted at a lower population in the field to grow longer more plump seeds. The largest of the seeds get sold to the inshell market, like what you eat at baseball games, while the smaller seeds are utilized in the dehull market. They can be sold raw, roasted as a snack, or used as an ingredient. The smallest of these sunflower seeds are used in the bird and pet food markets.
In the confection sunflower seed market, seed quality and appearance are king because that is the portion of the plant that will be consumed. Nuseed has invested in its R&D program to develop confection hybrids that meet these needs while also providing strong standability and agronomic performance against diseases that might impact the head. Another important area of development for Nuseed is the XXL market with the introduction of seeds that are more than one inch long.