For more than 30 years, FGI has led the alfalfa industry by breeding, developing, and producing premier alfalfa seed and technologies that have advanced farm operations across the country.

Our innovative genetic discoveries, variety developments and cutting-edge alfalfa trait technologies have led to the creation of several patented traits and technology in alfalfa, including HarvXtra® Alfalfa with Roundup Ready® Technology, as well as varieties with the UltraCut® alfalfa disease package.


Our national alfalfa research program spans 200+ acres at 6 regional research stations, including:

  • Nampa, ID
  • West Salem, WI
  • Arden Hills, MN
  • Davis, CA
  • Garden City, KS
  • Joy, PA


Biotic Stresses

Pursues and patents protection against insect diseases such as:

  • Potato leafhopper (PLH), with greater than 70 percent PLH resistance
  • Blue alfalfa aphid, many varieties with a High Resistance (HR) to impacts of aphid feeding

Integrates and patents high resistance to many important alfalfa diseases, including:

  • Aphanomyces root rot races 1 and 2 (plus a new one suspected to be race 3) into elite performing, proprietary germplasm
  • Patented protection for resistance to anthracnose race 5 in alfalfa, along with previously discovered race 1

Develops nematode-resistant alfalfa to protect yield and stand quality:

  • Many varieties resistant to both stem nematode (SN) and root knot nematode (RKN), economically important pests in the Western US
Abiotic Stresses

Salt tolerance testing at germination performed in the greenhouse to ensure appropriate performance under salt stressed conditions.

Additional salt-stressed testing at our Garden City, KS and Nampa, ID locations to further select the best varieties for these challenging climates.

Marker-assisted breeding

A method incorporated with traditional phenotypic selection, marker-assisted breeding allows for quicker identification and selection of plants with desired genetic resistance.

This results in newer technology and varieties with improved resistance hitting the market quicker, while keeping new technology more affordable for growers, like:

UltraCut® Alfalfa Disease Package:

Delivers an advantage through improved agronomic performance and yield potential. Grow a healthy alfalfa crop in field conditions susceptible to evolving Aphanomyces and Anthracnose disease strains.

Genome Sequencing 

Allows FGI to maintain integrity and quality of alfalfa germplasm in the market. Also, compiles a vast array of genetic sequences that will help us identify relatedness of genetic material, as well as potentially help in identifying important genetic sequences that can lead to improvements in performance.

Applied R&D

Leverages industry partnerships and research collaboration to help growers maximize digestible nutrient production per acre at the lowest production cost.

Develops long-term research program that evaluates agronomic benefits of alfalfa in cropping rotations, which includes partnerships with (but not limited to):

  • Government entities, including USDA-ARS, MN Dept of Ag, and NRCS
  • Universities such as University of Georgia, UC – Davis, University of Minnesota, and Montana State University
  • Private research institutions, such as Miner Institute in New York
  • Research location outside of Bismarck, ND focused solely on forage systems research