Departments - News Coverage

May 27, 2014
PCT Magazine

Central Garden & Pet Acquires Envincio Assets

— Central Garden & Pet Company, which includes the Central Life Sciences division, announced on April 1 that it had purchased certain assets of Envincio, a wholly-owned subsidiary of SantoLubes. The assets acquired include established brands, EPA registration assets, inventory and trade receivables.

Central’s Senior Vice President, Professional Brands, Frank Jusich said in a press release, “This acquisition will enable Central to be a key supplier and product innovator in the growing natural insecticides product market, often characterized as EPA-exempt products, as well as expanding offerings in traditional pesticides. The exclusive rights that Central acquired through this transaction will allow us to leverage these patented essential oil blends, along with building our existing business, to best serve the professional pest control markets.”

James Herrmann, director of marketing for Zoëcon Professional Products, a division of Central Life Sciences, told PCT that the company has been exploring ways to expand its active ingredient offerings and specialty products, so the acquisition makes sense. “The green, or 25(b) exempt market, is a specialty market that fits well with our business,” he said.

Herrmann said the product lines complement each other. “For example, we are focused in the IGR market and a lot of the Envincio products are similar to ours in that they are not traditional adulticides — they work by using different modes of action. Those products fit in very well with ours.”

Herrmann added that many of the details related to the acquisition are being worked out, including the integration of Envincio employees and products, and the future of the Envicio manufacturing plant in Georgia.

Envincio, a supplier of post-patent and select branded products for the pest management and animal hygiene markets, was founded in 2010. After introducing several new products, Envincio made headlines in March 2011 when it was announced that SantoLubes, owner of Prentiss, had purchased the firm and integrated the Prentiss and Envincio products. (SantoLubes had purchased Prentiss in 2008.)

George Garrison, president and CEO of SantoLubes, told PCT that SantoLubes made the decision to sell Envincio to concentrate on its core businesses: lubricants, synthetic fluids and greases for various applications. “All of these businesses are growing nicely, but we couldn’t grow all of them at the same time the way we wanted to,” he said. “We were offered a very attractive deal by Central, so we closed the deal.”

Garrison added that Envincio was growing as well, and that the company is poised for a successful 2014. “MGK’s acquisition of Valent [the company’s Environmental Science division] has opened up opportunities. We were poised for a very big year in 2014, and now Central will be [as a result of the acquisition],” he said. — Brad Harbison


Critter Control Technician Prevents Potential Tragedy

LAKEWAY, Texas — Ryan VanHellen, a technician with Critter Control of Austin, Texas, was performing a routine home inspection when he discovered something that could not be seen, yet was potentially more deadly than most wild animals he normally faces — an insidious gas leak in the customer’s home.

The customer, Lori Thomas, had been disturbed by a strong odor in the house and believed a dead animal, such as a raccoon or squirrel in a wall void, was the culprit. VanHellen, a 12-year veteran with Critter Control, was called out.

“When the owner opened the door to the laundry room it hit me like a ton a bricks. I said, ‘Yep, you probably have a dead squirrel in here,’” said VanHellen, who proceeded to try and pinpoint where the animal was located in the wall before he opened it up. To his surprise, the smell dissipated as he got closer to the wall.

“I started thinking it might have been a gas leak, so I went to the kitchen and checked out the stove,” he recalled. “The burner was on. Apparently, the week before the cleaning lady had been out and accidentally hit the burner on without lighting it.”

VanHellen turned off the burner, opened the windows to ventilate the house and recommended to the owners they have the gas company stop out, just to make certain there weren’t any leaks. One of the reasons the gas leak was not recognized sooner — by both the owners and VanHellen — was because the gas company had recently changed the odor of the propane.

Thomas called and thanked VanHellen’s office manager, and wife, Summer, saying, “I don’t know if he told you the story, but your husband saved our lives. We called your company to help us with an uninvited visitor after finding you on YP.com. When Ryan arrived, he discovered a gas leak. God is really watching over all us because I called the right people to do the right job. And I am going to put ratings and reviews on your website because you all are amazing. One good turn always deserves another, and I’m happy to say that we are alive thanks to you all.”

VanHellen was appreciative of the customer’s heartfelt message, and he noted this experience illustrates how important it is to not only thoroughly inspect, but also to think critically when doing wildlife work. This was not the first time he discovered a gas leak. A couple years ago he had opened up a fireplace wall in search of an animal carcass and the culprit turned out to be a breech in the fireplace’s gas line. — Brad Harbison


GPCA Executive Director Valera Jessee to Retire

— Valera Jessee, executive director of the Georgia Pest Control Association (GPCA) the last 28+ years, announced she will be retiring on June 30. The executive board has appointed a search committee to consider a replacement executive director.

Jessee, who turns 68 later this year, told PCT she had been considering retirement for the past couple years, and decided now was a good time for a transition as the association has a strong executive team in place and it is not facing pressing issues or emergencies.

Jessee came to GPCA in 1986 after having spent 15 years working as director of information and education with the Georgia Department of Agriculture. During her tenure, GPCA grew from 200 to 1,000 member companies and its annual budget increased from $80,000 to close to $600,000. Other accomplishments include: helping create the Guardians of GPCA; identifying a solid lobbying group for the association; establishing Georgia’s state legislative day; and helping GPCA raise $1 million for Leukemia/Lymphoma research.

In a statement e-mailed to GPCA members, Jessee wrote, “The friendship and support I have enjoyed since 1986 cannot be measured. As the association has prospered and grown, I too have benefited from the environment of leadership and professionalism. I leave behind an office — but I take friends with me for the rest of my life. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to serve you.”

Jessee added that she will remain as executive director for the United Producers Formulators & Distributors Association (UPF&DA), representing pest control manufacturers, formulators, distributors and product suppliers. She will work from her home office.


Date Book

Send your announcement at least 14 weeks in advance to jdorsch@giemedia.com. For additional dates, visit www.pctonline.com/events.

June 17-18: PCT Top 100 Awards Ceremony and Executive Summit, Hyatt Regency San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas. Contact: Kim Anderson, 800/456-0707

June 19-21: Pest Control Operators of California PCOC Expo 2014, Harrah’s Las Vegas Casino & Hotel, Las Vegas. Contact: Martyn B. Hopper, 916/372-4363 ext. 101 or visit www.pcoc.org.

July 17-19: NPMA Academy 2014, Westin La Paloma Resort, Tucson, Ariz. Contact: NPMA, 703/352-6762 or visit www.npmapestworld.org.

July 24-26: NPMA Mid-Atlantic/Carolinas Summer Conference, Holiday Inn Sunspree Resort, Wrightsville Beach, N.C. Contact: See July 17.

Aug. 24-27: Association of Structural Pest Control Regulatory Officials 58th Annual Meeting, Missoula, Mont. Contact: 757/753-8162 or email contact@aspcro.org.

Oct. 8-9: Food Safety and Pest Management conference, hosted by RK Environmental Services and Comprehensive Food Safety, Revel Resort, Atlantic City, N.J. Contact: www.cfsfoodsafety.com or call 800/996-4402.

Oct. 21-24: PestWorld 2014, Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin,
Orlando, Fla. Contact: See July 17.


Ed Vargo to Become Next Endowed Chair in Urban and Structural Entomology at Texas A&M

— Dr. Ed Vargo, professor and interim department head of the Entomology Department at North Carolina State University, will become the next endowed chair in Urban and Structural Entomology at Texas A&M, officially starting on Dec. 1, 2014. Vargo will be replacing Dr. Roger Gold, who will be retiring in January 2015, after having held the endowed chair position at Texas A&M since it was established in 1989.

Texas A&M is in the process of constructing a new $4 million building to house the Center for Urban and Structural Entomology. Vargo will be commuting back and forth to College Station, Texas this summer and fall to work with Gold as the building continues to be erected, Dr. David Ragsdale, head of Texas A&M’s Department of Entomology, noted in an e-mail.

Vargo has been at N.C. State since 1998 and, according to his website, his research “uses molecular ecological approaches to address basic and applied questions concerning population biology and breeding systems in urban insect pests. We use primarily microsatellite and mitochondrial DNA markers to study several important structural pests, including subterranean and drywood termites, ants, cockroaches and bed bugs.”

“Ed’s research is cutting edge. His training of students is exemplary, and his grantsmanship has been stellar,” Ragsdale told PCT. “He’s also shown the ability to teach multiple courses and really engage with students. All of those have to be done at an exceptionally high level at an endowed chairmanship position.”

As part of Gold’s appointment his responsibilities were divided among teaching, research and extension services. Vargo will have teaching and research responsibilities, but Texas A&M will be adding an extension entomologist.


FMC, Univar and 65 PMPs Team Up to Help the Homeless

— In December 2013, temperatures in Ohio dipped painfully low and then remained in the single digits for weeks. To help protect the area’s most vulnerable residents — the homeless — FMC Corporation and Univar teamed up with more than 65 local pest management professionals to make a difference. The group collected and distributed 57 “provision packs” and more than 80 meals to four homeless “camps” in the Columbus area.

Leading the charge were Univar Regional Sales Manager Kevin Behrens, who organized the endeavor and collected the items during the company’s annual holiday event, and FMC Midwest Market Specialist Arnold Ramsey, who distributed the packs with his wife, Sonya, and other volunteers. Providing the provisions as well as cash for food were more than 65 pest management professionals based in Ohio. Their contributions of toiletries, socks, hats, scarves, gloves, hooded sweatshirts and coats created the “provision packs” and their monetary contributions provided 80 meals of turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, stuffing, vegetables, ambrosia and dessert.

“The pest control industry is incredibly giving,” said Ramsey. “They are always willing to open their hearts, open their wallets, roll up their sleeves and get involved when there is a need.” Read more about the effort and find out how you can get involved at: www.fmcpestwire.com/2014/03/the-pest-management-industry-teams-up-to-help-the-homeless.


Comings & Goings

If your company has added new personnel, send a photo and press release to jdorsch@giemedia.com.

Timothy Periard has been promoted to vice president of operations for Bug Doctor Termite and Pest Control, Paramus, N.J., where he will oversee the operations of all five divisions of the company (Bug Doctor Termite and Pest Control, Bird Doctor Nationwide, Animal Doctor, Bedbug Doctor and Mosquito Doctor).

James Rodriguez, ACE, has been promoted to national marketing manager for the pest control division of J.T. Eaton, Twinsburg, Ohio.

In January, Harden Blackwell, chairman of Terminix Company in Greensboro, N.C., and Steve Taylor, founder of Capital Pest Services in Raleigh, N.C., were inducted into the North Carolina Pest Management Association (NCPMA) Hall of Fame, the association’s highest honor. The NCPMA Hall of Fame recognizes the men and women who have made significant life-long contributions to the pest management industry in North Carolina.

Brian Mount and Ken Hutto were recently named to the newly created positions of technical service managers for the FMC Professional Solutions business. Both were previously product development leads.

Steve Sullivan has been hired as Mid-Atlantic regional sales manager for the Zoëcon Professional Products (ZPP) division of Central Life Sciences. Sullivan will succeed Charlie Pate, a 23-year employee of Central Life Sciences who is retiring this year.

Brian Cook, grandson of the late John R. Cook Sr., has been promoted to chief administrative officer of Cook’s Pest Control. Cook previously has served as a service technician, customer care center manager and director of business development, in which he implemented a corporate chaplain resource for the company’s district offices.

In January, Eric Hernandez was promoted to vice president of fleet and assets for Massey Services. In his new role, Hernandez will be responsible for all vehicles, equipment, service center facilities, company uniforms, property and purchasing.

John Brownlee joined Rockwell Labs as its technical representative for the South Central territory, encompassing Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana. Brian Sundnas, who covered the south central territory for the last several years, has taken over the north central territory, which includes Missouri, Kansas, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, the Dakotas and Colorado.

Sean Jurecic joined Liphatech’s pest management division as Southeast district sales manager representing the company’s rodenticides in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and eastern Tennessee.

Beth (Dockins) Berry has been hired as vice president of business development for Real Green Systems. Berry brings 30 years of experience, having held roles with ChemLawn, Emerald Green and served as director of customer service for Scotts LawnService for the past 16 years.

Bill Clark, owner of Bill Clark Pest Control since 1957, has been inducted into the Better Business Bureau of Southeast Texas Hall of Fame and was awarded the “Friend of the Bureau” award. Clark was a founding member and charter accredited business of the BBB of Southeast Texas in 1963. Throughout the first 30 years, there were numerous times that the future of the BBB was tenuous at best, according to the company. Clark stood in the gap for the organization and fought for its existence even when other members of the board of directors were calling for its dissolution. At one point, Clark forwarded the phones of the BBB to his office, so that its phones would continue to be answered and the BBB remain viable. Today, the BBB of Southeast Texas ranks #2 of all 112 bureaus across North America.


Bayer Opens North American Bee Care Center

— On April 15, Bayer CropScience opened its North American Bee Care Center in Research Triangle Park, N.C. The 6,000-square-foot, $2.4 million center will support scientific research, product stewardship and sustainable agriculture to protect and improve honey bee health, as well as educate stakeholders and the general public about the beneficial insects.

The center has a laboratory with a teaching and research apiary, honey extraction and hive maintenance space; interactive learning center; meeting and training facilities for beekeepers, farmers and educators; office space for staff and graduate students; on-site honey bee colonies, pollinator-friendly gardens; and a screened hive observation area.

The North American Bee Care Center, part of the company’s $12 million corporate-wide investment in bee health in 2014, brings together experts in agriculture and apiology to develop comprehensive solutions for bee health, including entomologists and apiarists, graduate researchers and more.

The facility complements Bayer’s Eastern Bee Care Technology Station, a 1,200-square-foot field station that opened in November in nearby Clayton, N.C. Bayer’s first Bee Care Center opened in 2012 at the company’s global headquarters in Monheim, Germany.

“Honey bees are essential to modern agriculture production, and our North American Bee Care Center will help facilitate the research needed to help honey bees meet the increasing global demand for crop pollination,” said Jim Blome, president and CEO of Bayer CropScience LP North America. “Bayer CropScience actively seeks to promote bee-responsible use of Bayer products through worldwide communication activities and education. What we are developing here will serve not only to protect honey bees and their ability to effectively pollinate crops but will also help us leave a better world, one hive and one harvest at a time.”

Among those in attendance at the grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony were Dr. Becky Langer, manager, North American Bayer Bee Care Program; Dr. David Fischer, manager, North American Bayer Bee Care Center; Mark Schneid, chief marketing officer; Dr. Iain Kelly, Bayer CropScience issues manager; North Carolina Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler; Dr. Richard Linton, dean of North Carolina State University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences; NPMA Executive Vice President Bob Rosenberg; NPMA Incoming President Billy Tesh and Vice President of Communications Janay Rickwalder; Aaron Hobbs, RISE president; Karen Reardon, vice president of public affairs, RISE; and numerous members of the trade and consumer press.

Chief Marketing Officer Mark Schneid said the opening of the North American Bee Care Center is an indication of Bayer’s openness to “collaboration and engagement” with its university partners, beekeepers, educators and various industry stakeholders, including the structural pest control industry. “Opening the Bee Care Center is an important next step for us,” he said.

One of the more positive by-products of the growing public profile of the pollinator health issue in North America, according to Dr. David Fischer, manager, North American Bayer Bee Care Center, has been renewed interest in this area of basic research.

“This whole field of bee research five years ago was tiny and dying off,” he said. “There just wasn’t that much interest in it.” However, in recent years, Fischer observed, “it has captured the attention of the media and it has captured the attention of the research community. It’s exciting because there are young people who have a lot of enthusiasm for this (subject). They really love working with bees.”

For more information about the North American Bee Care Center and various Bayer initiatives relating to pollinator health, visit www.beecare.bayer.com/home. — PCT Staff



Orkin Purchases Pugliese Pest Solutions; Pugliese’s Copesan Relationship Changes

— Atlanta-based Orkin, a wholly owned subsidiary of Rollins, acquired Pugliese Pest Solutions on Feb. 3. As a result, Copesan Services has ended its relationship with the Utica, N.Y.-based firm.

Orkin acquired the family-owned company from Rick and Fran Pugliese whose father, F.J. Pugliese, founded Pugliese Pest Solutions in 1963. The company started out servicing the dairy industry in Utica and the Mohawk Valley and eventually expanded to the rest of the state.

“We are happy to add Pugliese Pest Solutions to our New York footprint,” said Freeman Elliott, Atlantic division president for Orkin. “Pugliese and Orkin share the same goals — long-term relationships with customers and co-workers. We are glad Rick and Fran picked Orkin to team up with.”

Region Manager Bill Minahan will supervise the company’s transition to Orkin.

With the sale of Pugliese, Copesan Services announced that the Copesan national accounts serviced by the firm would be transitioned to other Copesan Partners. Pugliese’s Copesan stock also will be repurchased by Copesan.

“We certainly respect the decision of owners Rick and Francis Pugliese to sell their family-owned business,” said Deni Naumann, president of Copesan. “However, we are sad to part ways with Pugliese, who has been a valued Copesan Partner in the Northeast since 1992 and a shareholder since 1996.”


PCO News

Please send press releases about your firm to jdorsch@giemedia.com.

Knockout Pest Control, Uniondale, N.Y., has been chosen as the pest management company for the Canon Americas Headquarters in Melville, N.Y., which recently earned LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. Knockout is NPMA QualityPro Green certified.

President of Orkin North America Gene Iarocci signed the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve’s (ESGR) Statement of Support. The ESGR promotes cooperation and understanding between employers and their National Guard and Reserve employees. By its signing, Orkin pledges the company will act as an advocate for employee participation in the military by supporting the nation’s Guard and Reserve units, their missions, their return home and their return to the workforce.

Fourth-generation, family-owned Sprague Pest Solutions, Portland, Ore., welcomed the second generation of its canine family as Nikki, a black Labrador, took over for April as the company’s lead bed bug canine inspector. Sprague held a retirement open house in early April during which it accepted donations for the Oregon Humane Society and had a representative from the Humane Society to answer questions about adopting or rescuing a pet. All of the bed bug dogs Sprague employs, including April and Nikki, are rescue dogs. April had earned a loyal following and celebrity status in the Portland market appearing numerous times on local television and in newspaper articles. April and Nikki live with Eckhard Mueller, ACE, Sprague’s certified bed bug K9 handler.

The Greater Nassau County Chamber of Commerce (GNCCC) named Nader’s Pest Raiders as 2013 Business of the Year in the large business category. The award acknowledges the accomplishments of a local business and the contributions it makes to the community through best business practices, community involvement and leadership. The award was voted on by the GNCCC Board of Directors. Nader’s is an Arrow Exterminators company that services northeast Florida.

Two pest management firms were recognized during the University of Georgia’s 2014 Bulldog 100 Celebration. The awards recognize fast- growing firms owned or operated by a University of Georgia graduate: Inspect-All Services, Conyers, Ga., was recognized as the 39th fastest-growing firm; Forsyth Exterminating, Cumming, Ga., was recognized as the 63rd fastest.

Charles Pate and H.F. Warns Retire from Central Life Sciences Zoëcon Division

— Central Life Sciences, whose founders invented insect growth regulator (IGR) technology more than 35 years ago, has announced the retirement of Charles (Charlie) Pate and H.F. Warns from the Zoëcon Professional Products division.

As Zoëcon mid-Atlantic region manager, Pate was responsible for the vector and professional pest management markets. A 23-year employee of Central Life Sciences, Pate contributed to the advancement of public health vector control as a supplier, educator, practitioner and professional association board member. These involvements led him to earn the Zoëcon Outstanding Sales Achievement Award and the Georgia Pest Control Association Pioneer Award. In his career, Pate also had worked for other large chemical companies as regional manager and at the Florida Department of Health as the district entomologist; he has served on several state and regional mosquito and pest control association committees.

“Charlie’s unsurpassed technical expertise and dedication to the goals of the mosquito control profession allowed him to become one of our most consistent and successful salespeople and an extremely influential leader within his division,” said Larry Smith, Central Life Sciences director of sales.

As Zoëcon south central regional manager, Warns was responsible for the vector and professional pest management markets. A 30-year industry veteran and 15-year Central Life Sciences employee, Warns launched and established more than a dozen new products, developed and presented training programs for the pest management and vector markets, and significantly impacted the company’s sales growth throughout the years. Warns earned many company awards and recognitions including two-time Salesman of the Year; he has presented seminars on industry topics across the U.S. Warns also served in the military and held positions with a variety of large chemical companies.

“In his 15 years with the company, H.F. has earned an exemplary reputation for sales achievement, very strong customer relationships and a well-rounded, yet thorough, knowledge of both the pest and vector control industries,” Smith said.