Mark Frahm Joins Sakata Seed America as Melon Breeder

Woodland, CA – Sakata Seed America recently welcomed Mark Frahm to its growing Research & Development team as the company’s Melon Breeder.

Mark joins a team of passionate and innovative plant breeders and research support teams equipped to catapult Sakata’s premium melon genetics to the next level. In recent years, the company has had great success in melons, introducing varieties that cater to the demands of growers and consumers, laser-focused on flavor, shelf life and grower friendliness. A prime example is the cantaloupe, Infinite Gold, which quickly drew a following in the Long Shelf Life market for its unmatched flavor and holding ability.

“Sakata’s products have a certain quality that I have admired throughout my tenure in plant breeding. I’m thrilled for this opportunity to create varieties that bring a reliable yield to the grower and an unforgettable experience for the consumer. Expect big things from Sakata’s melons in the near future!” states Frahm.

Beginning his breeding career fifteen years ago at Nunhems, Frahm is well-versed in the trialing and development of melons throughout North, Central and South America and has worked in all aspects of the breeding process for melons, from start to finish, to bring new genetics to market.

“Mark is the perfect addition to the team. His leadership skills and deep understanding of the plant breeding process will continue to bolster Sakata’s position as a leader in the cantaloupe segment. He will work out of our state-of-the-art, Woodland Innovation Center in Woodland, California – a perfect environment to support and enhance the team’s work. We’re very excited for what’s to come out of the Sakata melon program,” says Jeff Zischke, Senior Director, Research & Development at Sakata. 

Mark Frahm received a Bachelor of Science in Plant Breeding and Genetics from Purdue University, as well as a Master of Science in Plant Breeding and Genetics from Michigan State University.


Headquartered in Morgan Hill, CA, Sakata Seed America is a major research, seed production and marketing-distribution subsidiary of Sakata Seed Corporation, established in 1913.   Sakata Seed America serves as the headquarters for the North American operations. Sakata’s objective is to quickly and efficiently meet industry expectations for quality seed, innovative genetics and excellent greenhouse and field performance.