Ball to Shutter Nature’s Source

Chris Beytes

Proving that even the best ideas and products can find it challenging to break through long-standing tradition, Ball Horticultural Company has decided to end production of its Nature’s Source fertilizer brand after nine years of ownership. Ball bought the Texas-based brand, formerly known as Daniels Plant Food, from originator Ralph Daniels in 2010 and rebranded the product in 2013.

Why close? Lack of industry acceptance for the oil seed extract liquid feed, we were told. The product works beautifully and even offers an OMRI-listed formulation. But growers are used to mixing dry fertilizer in water to achieve certain levels of NPK and being able to monitor EC in an established fashion. The same applies to large-scale agricultural production, where Nature’s Source performed excellently in trials, but farmers were unwilling to adapt to the new product.

Ultimately, Ball hasn’t been able to attain the level of sales and distribution necessary to sustain the business. Nor could they find a buyer for the brand or processing facility. They’ll wrap up delivery of final orders over the next few months. GT