Hello and welcome to 2019! If you are reading this, you have likely received correspondence regarding a renewal of your program for 2019. We wanted to take a minute here to address the 2% price increase that we instituted this year.
Raising prices is something we never like to do, but it’s a necessity in business when our costs are continuing to rise significantly. Since we began in 1995, grass seed and fertilizer prices have gone up over 100%. In addition, a very tight labor market has made it much harder to find good help, which drives wages higher as well. Since materials and payroll are our two biggest expenses by far, we need to continually adjust to be able to continue to buy quality products and hire quality people. We certainly hope you understand. Since this is in keeping with the national rate of inflation, so we felt it was a very reasonable amount.
To better understand why we need to continue to adjust prices each season, please read about our shift to using Acelepryn below.
The Acelepryn Shift
Over the past 25 years, Merit was the preferred product for effective grub control and prevention in the lawn care industry. It worked well, was very safe and could be purchased in a large variety of forms. But all such products eventually lose effectiveness and Merit was no exception. In 2016 we started seeing grub problems on some lawns that we had properly treated. Other companies reported the same failures. The end was near and we knew that continued use of this product would only provide declining results each season.
Just in the nick of time, Acelepryn came onto the market and has proven to be the closest thing to a “Miracle Cure” that this industry has ever seen. Not only is it highly effective, but it is also extremely safe for wildlife, harmless to fish, bees, pets, and even humans. Unfortunately, it is extraordinarily expensive. Lawn care companies around the country have refused to adopt Acelepryn, instead sticking with the less expensive, less effective Merit out of habit and hope. We knew that adopting Acelepryn was the right thing to do, but we were shocked when we couldn’t easily find a supplier. At that time, there was only one blender (located in the midwest) who was licensed to produce the product we needed. They weren’t set up to produce and deliver a large amount to a lawn care company in Connecticut. But we persevered and held several negotiations with them in order to get what we needed for our clients.
As a result, Teed & Brown clients had almost no grub problems last season while the rest of the companies complained yet again that Merit wasn’t working as well anymore. We have already secured enough Acelepryn for the 2019 season (from the same manufacturer) who has confirmed that we’re still the only lawn care company in the country who has purchased Acelepryn in a significant quantity. That certainly may change and we hope it does, but we will continue to do the right thing for our clients regardless of whether or not other lawn companies see the light.