Mr. Ray Paquette reports
INTERNATIONAL ZEOLITE CREATING A GREEN FUTURE IN AGRICULTURE
International Zeolite Corp. has provided an update on 2022 accomplishments and an ambitious road map for 2023.
Two thousand twenty-two was a year of incredible progress for International Zeolite. International Zeolite completed a transformational mission from zeolite mining and exploration to a provider of agricultural technology with a focus on developing sustainable innovations around naturally occurring zeolite which addresses environmental concerns within the agricultural sectors. The company's priority in 2022 was on precommercialization of its Nerea line of products as a basis to improve agriculture through increased crop size, yields and reductions in problematic waste from traditional fertilizer methods. With its line of Nerea products, the company plans to change the way crops grow and help farmers reduce their ecological footprints through lowered greenhouse gas emissions and a reduction in the need for traditional fertilizer.
In Cuba, International Zeolite signed a formal agreement with the Foundation of the University of Havana to extend its exclusive licence to the Nerea technology to 20 years for the North American, Asian, European and Australian markets. International Zeolite appointed Dr. Sc. Gerardo Rodriguez-Fuentes as International Zeolite's chief science officer. Dr. Fuentes is recognized as one of the world's foremost scientific leaders in natural zeolite commercial and industrial applications.
In Canada, International Zeolite published independent studies that conclusively demonstrated that Nerea reduced crop time in lettuce, and basil production by 50 per cent and 30 per cent, respectively, while reducing the need for fertilizer requirements by over 80 per cent. The company's studies also demonstrated a significant overall reduction in the production of greenhouse gases. "Nerea can simplify and accelerate crop production for food and ornamental plant producers and would also be great for long-term crops such as nursery and perennial stock," said Derek Schulze, MSc, professor, Niagara College.
This past year International Zeolite signed a long-term partnership agreement with Niagara College Research and Innovation, providing International Zeolite with an extended research and development arm. Niagara College is ranked first place in Ontario -- and second in Canada -- among the most recent top 50 research colleges ranked by Research InfoSource Inc. "This work has implications for food production in Canada and across the globe," says Dr. Nantel, vice-president -- research, innovation and strategic enterprises at Niagara College. "It could allow us to grow crops more efficiently and economically, including in areas with limited access to soil and water."
Industry and government recognition in 2022 provided IZ with the credibility centred around its Nerea product line. The company was awarded the Fertilizer Accelerating Solutions & Technology Challenge by BioEnterprise and Ontario Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Rural Affairs. The grant that accompanied this award is being applied by International Zeolite toward commercialization activities.
The Canadian federal government, Agriculture Canada, through its Agri-Innovation program, formerly invited International Zeolite to submit a proposal for evaluation that provides funding for precommercialization activities.
"Ultimately, its all about bringing our products to the growers. We believe that once the early-adopter growers start using Nerea fertilizer products in existing commercial applications, the demand will go viral. It's a triple win for growers; they reduce their crop time, they significantly reduce their input costs and contribute to the national goal of reducing greenhouse gases," states Mark Pearlman, president and chief operating officer of International Zeolite.
In December of 2022, International Zeolite acquired its new production facility in Jordan Station, Ont. International Zeolite is currently outfitting the facility with the necessary equipment and personnel to begin production in March, 2023. The location offers quick access to the Welland Canal, rail and major trucking routes for getting its products to market.
This year the company will continue to build on its great progress of 2022, as it moves from precommercialization to full commercialization and revenue generation. Two thousand twenty-three will see the company's Nerea product lines being produced in Ontario and into the hands of growers. Next steps are onboarding distributors and creating education and awareness around the benefits of International Zeolite agricultural zeolite products.
"Two thousand twenty-two was the year we validated the benefits of Nerea. Two thousand twenty-three is the year we take that investment and convert it to revenue and growing our market share," stated Ray Paquette, chief executive officer.
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