November 1, 2016
As the 2nd most produced cereal crop and the single biggest consumer of fresh water worldwide, rice may be one of the primary crops needed to pioneer technology development designed to increase crop production while protecting and managing limited water resources.
BSEI continues to initiate field trials in growing rice to measure how products containing SumaGrow® impact rice production in varied climates and soil conditions.
- In a current trial in Texas, SumaGrow® treated rice outperformed the untreated fields. Nitrogen and Phosphorus were reduced by 30% on the treated field as compared to the Growers Standard (100 percent fertilizer) on the untreated fields. The treated groups showed increased vegetative establishment with more tillering and thicker root systems as compared to the untreated.
- SumaGrow® treated rice in the fields of Myanmar showed higher yields per acre than the untreated fields while reducing fertilizer. Consequently, the farmer profited an additional $150 more per acre with the increase in yield alone.
- In Romania, SumaGrow® treated rice fields utilizing 60 percent of the Growers Standard recommendations showed a yield increase and added $146 more per acre to the grower’s pocket than the untreated comparison.
- Organic Presidio rice treated with SumaGrow® flourished in Southeast Texas with a 23 percent increase over the control, again showing better establishment and vigor.
We expect to see an increasing reliance on microbial technology in rice production as the population soars to unprecedented numbers by 2050, mainly in Asia and Africa. For example, Asia and the Pacific account for more than 90 percent of world rice production and consumption, making the region’s food security and people’s livelihoods very much dependent on rice.
Consider the rice trial mentioned above in Myanmar, the world’s sixth-largest rice-producing country. The trial was conducted in the Hlegu Township, Ye Mon Village on Pearl Rice. Two treatment groups were tested, one group received no treatment and the other group was treated with a product containing SumaGrow® at one gallon per acre.
The test data showed increased plant height and an increase in the number of tillers for the SumaGrow treated groups. By harvest, SumaGrow treated rice out-performed the untreated rice in yield and tiller number leading to an economic advantage for the farmer.
SumaGrow® biological products deliver on all of the necessary functions that are needed to support a rising populace- increased crop production, reduction of fertilizers, reduction of irrigation demands, leading to environmentally responsible considerations of soil and water resources. Products containing SumaGrow® revitalize the soil microbial community allowing for plants to uptake more of the essential nutrients needed to maximize the plants growth and ultimately productivity. These biologicals increase the efficiency of fertilizer, leading to fertilizer reductions that reduce the overhead while maintaining yields. This has enormous long term implications in sustainability within agriculture, leading to less stress on the soil from over-fertilization.
Field Coordinator Drew Pigott recently visited Myanmar to tour the fields before beginning additional trials throughout the country. At least seven trials will begin in February when Mr. Pigott returns to assist in implementation.
September 7, 2016
BSEI AWARDED 2016 GOVERNOR’S AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE FOR PERFORMANCE IN EXPORTING
Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant awarded BSEI the 2016 Governor’s Award for Excellence for Performance in Exporting at a ceremony held at the Jackson Convention Complex on August 26. Gov. Phil Bryant presented six Mississippi companies, including BSEI, with awards for their success in maintaining or increasing export sales.
“I congratulate this year’s winners for growing their business and strengthening the economy through international trade. These businesses demonstrate Mississippi is a place where a variety of innovative companies thrive and enjoy years of success,” Gov. Bryant said.
BSEI has increased international exports by 189% since 2015. “Our increased sales and growth in exporting directly reflect our products’ performance,” said Wayne Wade, President of BSEI. “Not only do our products reduce agricultural inputs while yielding higher quality crops for the farmer, but they also support sustainable farming and agricultural conservation. I see these benefits as necessary functions to ensure global food security.”
BSEI received the Governor’s Award for Excellence in Exporting in 2014.
We are counting down the days until our upcoming seminar on September 27-28 in Hattiesburg, MS! We construct our seminars to be informational, powerful, and empowering. That said, we are pleased to introduce you to our newest field technician and presenter, Ethan Currie. Ethan will be delivering the presentation, “The Importance of Setting up Field Trials Correctly.”
Ethan was raised on a 3000 acre commercial farm that produced a variety of row crops. It was there that he began to understand the need for change from conventional cultivation practices to a more sustainable, but economically feasible system.
Ethan Currie assists with the setup and management of field trials as well as speaking with farmers and growers across the globe about SumaGrow® inside products.
Because field trials are fundamental to increasing your sales, we encourage you to conduct those trials that are useful to growing your business.
A well done field trial can:
- Unlock a state or country for registration and new sales
- Increase product sales for that trial crop
- Support the advertised benefits of your products
- Increase your credibility in the agricultural community
However, a qualified field trial can become expensive, and the parameters can get fairly complex. It must be planned, implemented, and managed well at every stage.
Ethan will walk you through the qualifications to consider before beginning a trial and lead a discussion on field trial dos and don’ts.
In addition, Ethan will explain the scholarship opportunities we may offer for a qualified trial and guide you through the application process.Register Now
August 18, 2016
CELEBRITY JUDGES SELECT SUMAGROW® AS “PITCH TANK” WINNER AT FREEDOMFEST 2016
The microbial technology of SumaGrow® won the Pitch Tank award at the 2016 FreedomFest for its ability to increase crop quality and yield while decreasing fertilizer and water usage in agricultural production.
Sound too good to be true? Not according to the five celebrity judges including Steve Forbes, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Forbes Media, and John Mackey, co-founder and co-CEO of Whole Foods Market, who found enough potential in the technology to vote it the winning product, beating out over 800 other hopeful applicants.
“We are talking about disrupting agriculture across the entire planet,” said Mackey after SumaGrow® was announced the winner. “I think that is a pretty good opportunity.” Mackey said he was impressed and will want to test SumaGrow® thoroughly to confirm claims.
“The Pitch Tank is a collaboration between FreedomFest founder Mark Skousen and the Angel Investors Network to provide entrepreneurs with the opportunity to present their business model to thousands of investors and a star-studded panel of angel investors. In addition, BSEI won $140,000 in prizes.
“Following the announcement, Lou Elwell, CEO of BSEI, returned to his trade show booth and discovered a check for $50,000 attached to a note that read, "Do Us Well!" “Despite initial hesitation, SumaGrow® has steadily gained credibility and influence among agribusiness and the agricultural community because it works,” said Mr. Elwell.
The technology of SumaGrow® contains soil microorganisms, selected for their ability to increase soil fertility and plant health, and is blended with liquid humates for easy application. SumaGrow® has been tested on hundreds of different crop types in varied climates and soil conditions. Referenced in college textbooks, gardening books, and countless magazines, products containing SumaGrow® continue to make headlines for their many benefits for the farmer, the soil, and the earth.
BSEI ON THE ROAD
Our field team recently enjoyed participating in the quarterly meeting of the Jones County Cattlemen’s Association held at the JCJC Advanced Technology Center in Ellisville, MS.Around 200 cattle producers attended the meeting, dining on ribeye steak, baked beans, baked potato and blueberry pie, and listening as Chuck Grantham, Agricultural Consultant for BSEI, presented a PowerPoint identifying the many benefits of using SumaGrow® on forages. BSEI Field Technician Ethan Currie said, “There was a lot of interest in the product. We must have talked with at least 60 to 70 producers.”
Drew Pigott headed west to evaluate more rice fields being tested with products containing SumaGrow®. This producer is applying SumaGrow® to approximately 22 of his 800 acres of rice this year for testing. Drew will be headed back out in the next few weeks.
August 4, 2016
SUMAGROW® LOOKS TO EXPAND SALES IN SOUTHEAST ASIA
We were happy to host a delegation from Myanmar for meetings to discuss a potential partnership on a pilot project to increase organic rice cultivation in the country using products containing SumaGrow®. Although organic production took root in the Southeast Asian country around 1990, only around 130 acres of the nation’s farmland is currently utilized for this purpose.
After observing the success of the trials using SumaGrow® for organic rice production in Vietnam, representatives on behalf of Myanmar began talks with BSEI about a potential partnership. Recently, Wayne Wade, President of BSEI, met with Kyaw Myo Htut, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, and Ms. Ohn Mar Aye, Economic Attache, at the Embassy of the Union of Myanmar in Washington, DC to continue dialogue.
Drew Pigott, Field Services Coordinator for BSEI, will be traveling to Myanmar to initiate, develop, and oversee the implementation of the upcoming trials. The trials will be ongoing, replicated, and will measure rice quality and yield, with a reduction in fertilizer, among other data points.
“We look forward to introducing our products to the governments and farming communities in Myanmar and developing relationships that forward our mission of leaving a legacy of good stewardship to the generations that follow us,” said Wade.
Myanmar is 261,000 square miles (about the size of Texas) and boasts some of the most fertile soil in the world. Around 60 to 70 percent of Myanmar’s population are smallhold farmers and close to 90 percent of these farmers depend on rice for subsistence.
BSEI ON THE ROAD
It has been a busy couple of months! Our teams have travelled from coast to coast talking with growers, assisting in field trials, and telling farmers and agricultural professionals about SumaGrow® products.
To give you a snapshot, some of our team headed to the 2016 National Association of County Agricultural Agents Convention in Little Rock Arkansas to communicate the benefits of SumaGrow® products to Extension Agents. It was a success, and over 1,000 people attended!
Others flew to Florida to assist with sugarcane and citrus production, and then a few headed to the grand state of Texas for rice. We travelled to California to participate in business meetings and dug in the dirt with peanut producers in Alabama. Have I mentioned we love our jobs?!
IS BIG AG BAD FOR THE WORLD?
We certainly hope not.
Large farms now dominate crop production in the United States. In the early, 1980s most cropland was found on farms with fewer than 600 acres. Today, most cropland is on farms with over 1,000 acres. Interestingly, there has been an increase in both large farms and smaller farms while mid-size farming is declining.
While reports abound that water contamination and the decrease of arable land are direct consequences of large production farms, the EPA has published a memorandum “reaffirming its commitment to partnering with states and stakeholders to address nitrogen and phosphorus pollution…” This memorandum, which applies not only to agricultural practices, presents a framework states can use to reduce nitrogen and phosphorus pollution.
In the coming years, it is projected that producers will be required, through strict regulations and penalties, to reduce their pesticide and fertilization applications. Similarly, there is debate whether farm subsidies should be tied to measurable sustainable efforts.
The fact that large production farms account for a significant volume of our sales at BoiSoil Enhancers, Inc. (BSEI) tells us that production farmers understand that farming practices must adapt and are reaching out for products containing SumaGrow to bridge the gap. The quandary many face is the expense of integrating sustainable farming methods while still maintaining a profit.
Products containing SumaGrow fill that transitional gap and beyond. Our agricultural biologicals contain beneficial bacteria and fungi that begin working upon application. SumaGrow’s biological blends allow the producer to reduce his fertilizer inputs and increase crop quality while still maximizing yields. Some of the benefits include quickening the breakdown of cover crops into valuable organic matter, balancing the soil pH pre-plant, making nutrients more available at emergence, and giving a boost to juvenile crops through soil or foliar application.
The results are indisputable. For example, the protocols of an organic corn trial conducted in 2011 in Marshall, Wisconsin compared a product containing SumaGrow and 50 percent Grower Standard (half of the standard recommended fertilizer application) with full 100 percent Grower Standard (standard recommended fertilizer application). When the fertilizer application was reduced by 50 percent and a product containing SumaGrow was added, the corn yields increased 21% over the Grower Standard treatment. The reduction of fertilizer application and the increase in yield profited the farmer an additional $329 per acre.
Or consider a testimonial by Billie Davis, a farmer in Dover, Florida who has been growing collards, mustard, scallions, and black eye peas on his farm for 45 years.
This mustard field was planted from seed 27 days prior to this photo. “I have been able to reduce my nitrogen based fertilizer by 50%. I have also been able to reduce my pesticide applications because bugs don’t like to chew on healthier plants…. [SumaGrow] has given me a better yield consistently over the past five years saving me money,” he said. “Since I started using [SumaGrow] five years ago I have reduced my input costs by $250 per acre per year and I have seen better yields.”
These producers are integrating sustainable farming practices and still making a profit.
The farmer will face increasing pressure to improve farm efficiencies for the environmental protection and preservation of our natural resources. The good news is SumaGrow biologicals are ahead of the game and have been comprehensively tested over the last decade on a multitude of crops in various soil types and climate conditions. Overwhelmingly, the results demonstrate SumaGrow’s ability to grow crops with higher yields and higher Brix, while decreasing the use of synthetic fertilizer. This reduces water contamination and land degradation, while protecting our soil and water resources.
IS SUMAGROW IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BATTLE OVER GLYPHOSATE?
Yes and no.
You can’t turn on the television, surf the internet, or listen to the radio without being confronted by the endless debate over the use of glyphosate (contained in Roundup and similar products) to eliminate weeds, in gardens and agriculture production. First introduced in 1974, Roundup is now one of the world’s most widely used herbicides in more than 160 countries, and is currently making headlines for possibly being carcinogenic to humans. Several countries including the Netherlands, Sweden, and France are advocating a ban over the use of glyphosate.
As the battle of words and scientific studies rages on, the producers are caught in the middle of this crossfire of information and misinformation. Farmers have been depending on these products for generations and believe them to be reliable, safe, and an important tool in controlling weeds and increasing yields. However, many are now looking for an alternative solution for weed control.
Where does Bio Soil Enhancers, Inc. (BSEI), manufacturer of products containing SumaGrow, fit in this cacophony of confusion? We advocate for the farmer and work diligently to protect the consumer by making products that help restore and maintain soil health and fertility. Products containing SumaGrow help the farmer reduce his agricultural inputs and maximize his yield quality and quantity while reducing the amount of inputs introduced into the food system.
Although we cannot speak to the human risk involved with the use of glyphosate, we can address the harm it may cause to the health and fertility of the soil.
Despite the best intentions, herbicides, synthetic fertilizers, and pesticides can damage and destroy vital soil microorganisms. These microorganisms are the building blocks for healthy soil and productive cropping systems. Beneficial bacteria and fungi:
- Transform organic matter into plant nutrients that are assimilated by plants (FAO)
- Are key to forming good soil structure or tilth. Good tilth promotes better root development and water storage (University of Minnesota Extension)
- Are what builds soil highways for efficient transport and storage of soil moisture, gases and nutrients. (Corn and Soybean Digest)
- Build natural fertility that increases plant production. ( Cattle Business)
Using products containing SumaGrow is especially important when liberally using synthetic inputs. Regular use of products containing SumaGrow repopulates the soil with fundamental microorganisms that work around the root zone of plants or grasses to achieve optimal soil fertility and maximize yields.
While many in agribusiness are just now acknowledging the benefits of agricultural biologicals, BSEI has been recognized for being in the forefront of this biological movement for almost a decade, nationally and internationally. Consider back in 2011 when BSEI was highlighted in “Bison World.”
“Every chemical-based pesticide, fumigant, herbicide and fertilizer tested harms or outright kills some part of the beneficial life that exists in the soil…..Less than half of the existing active ingredients used in pesticides have been tested for their effects on soil organisms…” (Dr. E. Ingham, at Oregon State University)
A new organic soil microbial introduced by Bio Soil Enhancers, Inc. shows significant promise for increased forage and crop yields, improved brix levels and significant or elimination of chemical and forms of fertilizer.” (Bison’s World, 2011)
Or again in 2011 when Popular Science chose our technology for the Grand Award winner for the Green Tech category in their annual “Best of What’s New 2011” issue.
And in 2010 when Bio Soil received the Venture Prize, an annual award worth $10,000.
“Southern Growth Studio’s managing partner stated “We are very excited about partnering with this young company to help them reach their potential and beyond. Bio Soil Enhancers is pioneering technology that can lead to truly sustainable agriculture, and this has major positive implications for the world food supply and the preservation of the environment.”
Or even in 2009 when the benefit of using SumaGrow technology was pictured in Forbes.com using the roots of soybean plants. The SumaGrow treated plant’s roots where significantly larger and longer than the untreated.
Now, selling SumaGrow inside products with over 20 brands in 40 countries and having made the Inc. 500 list twice in the last few years, BSEI is poised to become the most widely used and recognized agricultural biological in the world. Referenced in college textbooks, gardening books, and countless magazines, products containing SumaGrow continue to make headlines for its many benefits for the farmer, the soil, and the earth.
Whether growing organically or conventionally, products containing SumaGrow are an essential investment with a significant return for our generation and the next.
SO, WHAT’S THE BIG DEAL ABOUT EARTH DAY ANYWAY?
As many of you know, Earth Day is just around the corner, celebrated on April 22nd.
The Earth Society Foundation formally established Earth Day in 1976 with the following mission:
“Conduct educational programs and seminars and promote research and investigation throughout the world for the purpose of providing data to all individuals and institutions who are joining in the movement to promote and implement the Earth care ethic: namely, that the stewardship and care of earth requires action to produce and use materials and services that help nurture, conserve and recycle, without destructive pollution, the organisms and nutrients of Earth’s web of life. Coordinate or assist the work of like-minded organizations for the purposes of minimizing unnecessary duplication of energies and maximizing the impact and effectiveness of the earth care movement.” (Emphasis mine)
Really, we don’t need to save the earth, as it will survive without us. We need to save us. To do this, we must accept that agricultural conservation and sustainable agriculture are more important than ever.
The statistics can be startling:
- About a quarter of the world’s farmland is seriously degraded. (FA0)
- Throughout the world, current erosion rates are higher than ever. According to a study for the International Food Policy Research Institute, each year an estimated 10 million hectares (24,710,538 acres) of cropland worldwide are abandoned due to soil erosion and diminished production caused by erosion.(Worldwatch Institute , Worldwatch.Org)
- By 2050, the world’s population will reach 9.1 billion, 34 percent higher than today. (FAO)
- Soil compaction is a worldwide problem, especially with the adoption of mechanized agriculture. It has caused yield reductions of 25 to 50% in some regions of Europe (Ericksson et al., 1974) and North America, and between 40 and 90% in West African countries.
- Agriculture is the largest user of freshwater (70%) and a major cause of degradation of surface and groundwater resources. (FAO)
- Some 16,000 waterways are impaired, and 78 percent of assessed coastal waters suffer from nutrient pollution which affects water used for drinking, fishing, swimming, and other recreational purposes. (EPA)
Will just using biologicals (like those found in products containing SumaGrow) in agricultural production solve all of these challenges? The answer is no. There is no one solution to cure what ails our planet, but we would argue that our products are one of the most important foundations for addressing these growing challenges. When combined with sustainable farming methods, they will also restore and maintain soil fertility and crop production.
Our teams of field scientists and agronomical experts have traveled extensively: to India, Honduras, South Korea, China, and Brazil, just to name few countries. The overwhelming concerns voiced by farmers in all of these countries are increasing soil fertility, crop quality, and yields, while reducing fertilizer inputs.
For almost a decade, Bio Soil Enhancers has been addressing these concerns in over 40 countries, and has been recognized nationally and internationally for our efforts.
Microorganisms are the foundation of life. You can grow a crop without fertilizer, but nothing grows without microorganisms. Over-fertilization, and the use of pesticides, damages and destroys microorganisms. With liberal use of these products, it becomes necessary to continually repopulate your soil to maintain a vibrant community of microorganisms. The microorganisms found in products containing SumaGrow have been carefully selected for their ability to work together in the soil and root zone of the plant to support maximum yields with fewer fertilizer and irrigation demands.
For additional information, we invite you to visit our website and view results of our field trials conducted by universities, specialized testing facilities, and independent consultants.
We are celebrating Earth Day at the Downtown Hattiesburg Farmers Market on Thursday, April 21, and if you are local, we hope you will join us.
You may still be asking, “What’s the big deal about Earth Day anyway?”
We believe that we, the people, are the big deal. It is important to support and recognize producers in their efforts to use sustainable agriculture techniques and forward thinking farm management plans for ourselves, our children, and our future.
Happy Earth Day!