Scotts shows off "unique" research and new product development

Scotts Miracle Gro has held an open day at its Levington Research Station near Ipswich to emphasise its R&D credentials in the face of what it claims are a plethora of copycat products.

Some of Scotts' product range - image:HW
Some of Scotts' product range - image:HW
More than a dozen Patch Magic-inspired products were on display, with Scotts researchers showing tests of its grass seed product's superiority to over a dozen similar products launched across Europe after Patch Magic's 2010 launch, including Patch Fix, Aftercut Patch Fix and Patch Perfect.

Patch Magic now has the top five GfK rankings in the lawn seed product category, with its 2012 product Patch Magic Dog Spot Repair fifth. Patch Magic has 27 per cent of the £15 million category market - around £4 million sales a year.

Scotts also revealed trials of its newly launched Flower Magic, described by new product development manager Elaine Gotts as a "blockbuster innovation".

Westland has already interpreted this new flower seed/coir/fertiliser sprinkler product into its own packeted version, for launch at Glee on September 17.

Scotts, which will also officially launch at Glee, expects similar sales to Patch Magic of the £12.99 sprinkler product - around £4m a year.

Sales of Expand 'n Gro were £1m in the first year, with the product tenth in the GfK branded growing media chart. A new 8 litre £5.99 bag launches at Glee. Scotts will also launch a set of 11 straight fertilisers at Glee under the Miracle Gro brand.

Scotts took over the 7.5ha Levington station in 1997.

It runs 120 trials a year there against competitors, in addition to its R&D in the US, France and Australia. R&D manager Deirdre Charleston said it was "unique to have so many different facilities and purpose-built R&D".

Scotts' sales are 14 per cent down this season, which the company said was typical of the market in a poor weather season.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Business Planning - Staff are your greatest asset

Business Planning - Staff are your greatest asset

An effective strategy to retain staff is the best way for any business to avoid a potential recruitment crisis, Neville Stein advises.

Why are small garden centre groups expanding?

Why are small garden centre groups expanding?

After Coolings bought a third site in Kent this October, what is driving garden centres to add extra locations to their offer?

Is targetting younger buyers a distraction for garden centres?

Is targetting younger buyers a distraction for garden centres?

Garden centres may be better off looking towards their traditional demographic than chasing young customers.

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Top 100 GARDEN CENTRES 2017

See our exclusive ranking of garden centre performance by annual turnover. 

Garden Centre Prices

Peter Seabrook

Inspiration and insight from travels around the horticultural world

Read more Peter Seabrook articles

Neville Stein

Business advice from Neville Stein, MD of business consultancy Ovation

Read latest articles