Upcoming tech from two of NPMA’s Strategic Partners
Technology touches every aspect of the pest management industry. Behind those innovations are NPMA Strategic Partnerships, key innovators who are driving the industry forward through education and advocacy. Corteva Agriscience and FMC are profiled here.
Mark Neterer, business leader for the pest management and turf ornamental business at Corteva Agriscience, perceives opportunities both known and unknown in an increasingly technological industry.
“PMPs are looking to technology to help them run their businesses more efficiently, to manage information more accurately, and to make good decisions on the best service they can provide the consumer,” Neterer said. “Then there is the whole other side of the coin, what I would call ‘unknown needs’ that PMPs have. That’s where it gets really interesting. Corteva is investing in technology that the pest management industry hasn’t even thought about that will help PMPs provide superior service to the consumer, profitably.”
That last category is one he believes will become more apparent as companies begin to offer solutions—and he believes pest management companies will be receptive. “The industry is awesome because they’re open to change and to trying new things,” he said.
He notes that electronic remote monitoring (ERM) is a “slowly evolving market” as PMPs “try to figure out where the value proposition is and how we use this to better serve our customers.”
Corteva is in the space with the ActiveSense™ System, remote pest monitoring and analytics platform. Those types of solutions can help improve the customer experience as well as improve operational efficiencies for the PMP.
“A lot of time, energy and manpower is wasted on checking areas that never have any activity,” Neterer said. “Using technology to help the technician focus on the problem areas is a huge win for both the consumer and the PMP.”
Technology also can help with social distancing, sending the technician only to areas where there has been rodent activity. “They’re strategic and precise and going in for shorter periods of time in more isolated areas and not being exposed to other people, or having the workers exposed to them.”
Corteva also will be introducing new innovative technology that will provide PMPs with additional tools for The Sentricon® system. Neterer says those new technologies will include “equipment, newly registered products and industry leading business building resources that both the property owner and the PMP who is providing the service will benefit from.”
He also hints at new innovations from Corteva to help the industry “identify and recruit a new population of workers and customers in the marketplace.”
The pest management industry is ready to become even more high tech, he believes. “As you have a new generation of owners coming into the business, they’re using technology differently. That’s why we’re really investing and spending a lot of time in this space. It is the future and it’s going to be very beneficial for the industry and the consumer. We are very excited about leading the pest management industry into a future that incorporates our new technologies supported by a passionate team dedicated to creating safe and healthy living environments by helping PMPs bring great value to their customers.”Opens in modal lightbox
FMC is known in the pest management industry for trusted, tried-and-true brands like Talstar and CB-80. With an underutilized but established active ingredient like gamma-cyhalothrin at the heart of it, Scion Insecticide with UVX Technology would be all too easy to write off as just another pyrethroid liquid. But that would be a mistake.
“There’s a reason we didn’t launch a gamma-cyhalothrin product as soon as we acquired the molecule,” said Dan H. Carrothers, commercial director, professional solutions for FMC Global Specialty Solutions.
He notes that some technology, like remote sensing for rodents, grabs the attention of PMPs. However, when it comes to chemical formulations, there is a higher bar. Those same PMPs display more caution, taking time to determine if what they’re being offered is truly different.
“Established brands work and PMPs know it,” says Carrothers. “To pass the test, a new liquid has to have even better efficacy to reduce labor and callbacks, and remain affordable, so that PMPs can increase their margins without raising the cost to the consumer.”
That’s what FMC zeroed in on as they spent years engineering the proprietary UVX Technology that Carrothers says makes Scion truly different. “Scion handles the toughest pests and its longevity was tested under the harshest conditions. After spending most of last year sampling it out and monitoring the results, we launched an assurance program guaranteeing that. We are confident that with UVX Technology, Scion is bringing PMPs the truly different level of performance we intended,” he said.
In addition to Scion, FMC has been focused on innovating the way they interact with customers. In 2019, the company launched a loyalty program called FMC True Champions. It brings enrollees biannual rebates on both tried-and-true brands like Talstar and new solutions like Scion as well as offering value-adding Business Building Solutions and customer-supportive Industry Commitment. That program has been “extremely successful,” Carrothers said.
Further, because of the financial difficulties of the coronavirus pandemic, FMC cut the first half of the year’s checks early. “To help with cash flow,” Carrothers explained. “These are not large dollar amounts, but not insignificant. Every little bit helps.”
BY SANDY SMITH