In 1991 Brad Ross left the big city of Los Angeles and moved his family to a small farm outside of Portland Oregon for quality of life reasons.
They had barely moved in when the collection of chickens and horses and pigs and cows started.
On the advice of the previous homeowner, Brad started releasing beneficial insects to control a fly problem. Truth be told it was not done for any environmental concerns but because it was easier, less time consuming and gave better results than using traps or sprays.
Soon the questions started, “What are you doing for fly control?”
When friends or parents of Brad’s kids friends came over he would end up talking about beneficial insects.
One day a light bulb went off “Hmm. Maybe there is a market here!”
After about year of research, study, trial and error, Brad the Bugman started selling Fly Parasites. Soon Brad was giving talks at horse shows, farmers markets, schools and at garden clubs.
Soon another type of question started getting asked. “These Fly Parasites really work, but what do you have for fleas? or ants? or root weevil?”
Realizing there were more pests to kill out there than just flies, Brad studied harder than he ever did at school! Soon he added Beneficial Nematodes, Predatory Mites, Lacewing and Ladybugs.
For every pest a homeowner or grower could be dealing with we had a Beneficial Insect or a non-toxic way to kill it. Brad saw his job was helping educate people that there is an alternative to chemicals.
The first few years were tough. After all, what’s not funny about a grown
man trying to support a family by selling bugs? But little by little the business grew.
It was fairly common to be talking with a potential customer at a horse expo or
farmers market and have a stranger come up and say “I know it sounds funny,
but I use them, and they work.”
But, selling Beneficial Insects is just like any other business.
Now after more than 17 years – and the (legal) explosion of commercial and private Cannabis (marijuana) growers has created a huge demand for a non pesticide control of insects that attack these plants.
Instead of the huge windfall of cash some growers expected, instead they are facing huge crops of spider mites, thrips, broad mites and many more!
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