A market survey is being conducted to determine if there are adequate Small Business, SBA certified HUBZone, SBA-certified 8(a), Women-Owned, or Service Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) contractors available for a proposed project who meet the specific criteria outlined below.

This is a SOURCES SOUGHT NOTICE ONLY. This is not a solicitation Announcement or Request for Quote. It does not constitute any commitment by the Government. No award will result from this notice. The purpose is to conduct market research to gain knowledge of potentially qualified sources and to determine the capability of Small Business and/or Large Business companies to provide the supplies/services described below. Responses to this Sources Sought Notice will be used by the Government to make an appropriate acquisition decision. Department of Agriculture (ARS) requests responses from ALL socioeconomic categories in order to gain a more complete understanding of the market for these products and service.

The USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) will not award a contract on the basis of responses or pay for the preparation of any information submitted. Respondents will not be notified of the results of this notice. After completing an analysis of the responses, the Government will determine whether to limit competition to 8(a), HUBZone, SDVOSB, Women-Owned, or other small business firms, or to proceed with issuing an unrestricted solicitation, inviting full and open competition.

The NAICS code for the expected acquisition is 333111, with a Size Standard of 1,250 employees and the PSC Code is 3720. Any subsequent procurement will be conducted as a commercial item purchased in accordance with FAR Part 12 and as a Simplified Acquisition Procedure in accordance with FAR Part 13.

The Department of Agriculture (ARS) has the need for the following products and services:

001) Germplasm Enhancement of Maize (GEM) Shelling Line Seed Treater

Scope of Work:

The USDA-ARS North Central Plant Introduction Station (NCRPIS) in Ames, IA is seeking sources for a germplasm enhancement of maize (GEM) shelling line seed treater.


A medium batch seed treater is needed for the Germplasm Enhancement of Maize (GEM) Project shelling and seed processing line. The current shelling line seed treater has exceeded design life, is no longer supported by the manufacturer, and cannot be repaired further. The current unit needs to be replaced with a unit compatible with the existing shelling line.

Technical Requirements:

The selected seed treater must meet the following requirements.

  • Capable of integration into existing breeding research shelling line designed and constructed by Almaco which requires treatment sample to enter treatment chamber from the top of the unit.
  • Treatment sample size capability of 1 to 5 pounds.
  • Electrical:  110v – 60 Hz
  • Viewing port for treatment chamber to insure cleanout between samples.
  • Compressed air operation for treatment application and treatment chamber discharge.
  • Treatment fully automated with integrated treatment pump.
  • Timed drying and treatment pump operation.

The GEM Project shelling line is located at the North Central Plant Introduction Station (NCRPIS) at 1305 State Avenue in Ames, Iowa. Contractor access to current equipment for bid development and unit compatibility determination during normal working hours can be scheduled as needed. Photographs and measurements of shelling line can also be provided on request.

Evaluation Factors:

The government intends to award a firm-fixed price award based on the lowest price technically acceptable product. The lowest priced product will be evaluated first; if not found acceptable, the next lowest priced product will be evaluated, and so on until an acceptable product is identified. The government will not review higher priced products if the lowest priced product is determined to be technically acceptable. For a vendor’s products to be considered technically acceptable, they must meet all of the technical requirements identified in the solicitation.

Key Deliverables:

  • Germplasm Enhancement of Maize (GEM) Shelling Line Seed Treater
  • Delivery
  • Installation


Delivery and installation to be made to USDA-ARS Plant Introduction located at 1305 State Avenue, Ames, IA 50014 within 45 days of date of award.

The vendor shall provide all items F.O.B: destination. Location of the Government site is aboard USDA-ARS Ames, IA and will be identified in the contract. The Government anticipates award of a Firm Fixed Price contract.

Capability Statement:

Companies who have the experience, as well as an interest in doing business with ARS, should submit a Capabilities Statement which, for this notice, is not expected to be a proposal, but rather short statements regarding the company’s ability to demonstrate their expertise and experience in relation to the areas specified in this notice.

Companies should also indicate whether they are a Small Business, SBA-certified HUBZone, SBA-certified 8(a), SDVOSB, or Women-Owned Small Business.

To be eligible, all vendors must be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) with a current and active registration. A DUNS (Dun and Bradstreet) number is required in order to register in SAM. A vendor can contact SAM by calling 1-866-606-8220 or e-mail at www.sam.gov. NO EXCEPTIONS. Vendor must include their DUNS# on their capability statements.

Finally, to be eligible, all vendors must be NDAA 889 Certified. If they do not currently have a NDAA 889 Certification, then they must complete the attached NDAA 889 Certification form and submit it to aaron.dimeo@usda.gov so that they can be added to the list of NDAA 889 Certified vendors.

Submitting a Capability Statements:

Responses should be submitted via email to aaron.dimeo@usda.gov by Monday, September 13, 2021 at 5:00 p.m. CST. Telephone inquiries will not be accepted.


This notice does not obligate the Government to award a contract or otherwise pay for the information provided in response. The Government reserves the right to use information provided by respondents for any purpose deemed necessary and legally appropriate. Respondents are also advised that under no obligation to acknowledge receipt of information or provide feedback about any of the information received.  After review of the responses received, the Government may issue a pre-solicitation synopsis and solicitation. No proprietary, sensitive, confidential or classified information shall be included with your response. The Government reserves the right to use any non-proprietary technical information in any resultant solicitation.