Business Name: Bio Diesel Nutrients
Business Address: 32 Silkwood Rise, Carrum Downs, VIC, 3201, Australia
Phone: +61 3 3775 1243; 0411 843 547 mobile
By putting the biology back into hydroponics, increasing yields without chemicals, and ultimately increasing the medicinal and nutritional value of the finished product, Bio Diesel Nutrients is on a mission to lift the standards of Australian hydroponic produce. Owner Steven Palmer explains his journey, inspiration, and philosophy behind the products.
Originally, my journey in hydroponics began in 1995 when I walked into Pet and Garden Hydroponics in Christchurch, New Zealand. With a shiny new NFT system and a couple of 400W MV ballast kits, and some solid professional advice, my first crop amazed me and I have never looked back.
While earning a bachelor’s degree at Canterbury University in communication and marketing, I was blessed to work with Ian Jackson, the original owner and developer of Harvest Master climate controllers. I helped out with early product development and then moved into sales. Ian played a big part in my life and helped launch me into the industry. After completing my degree, I started doing sales trips to Australia, visiting hydroponics retailers and wholesalers, one of which was Graeme at Holland Forge. Graeme did not sign up for the product but instead offered me a job at his company and relocation to Australia.
“Constant innovation is important to us and allows us to introduce original products.”
So, in 2004, my girlfriend Rene and I moved to Melbourne to work as a sales representative for Holland Forge Wholesalers.
Graeme’s guidance and product access was invaluable and helped me expand my knowledge of nutrients and various hydroponic techniques. I became the company sales manager and started to help develop many new products within the company while handling technical enquiries and key accounts.
How Bio Diesel Nutrients Came to Be
After years of selling numerous big brand imported nutrients, as well as many locally produced products at Holland Forge, I identified that there was a gap for plant nutrients and additives that were organic or natural that produced a higher quality of produce while still increasing yields like chemical additives can. Chemical inputs may be cheaper than natural extracts, but the quality of results with natural inputs easily makes up the difference.
With increasing biology and organic inputs in mind, I started Bio Diesel Nutrients in 2013, and while working closely with Joe from Nature’s Own and with guidance from Graeme, we launched the original Bio Diesel Bloom enhancer.
In 2016, I moved into my own facility and, after completing certificates in organic horticulture and nutritional biology, I developed a network with highly-skilled agronomists and microbiologists that have been fantastic to work with and really furthered my way of thinking about plant growth, nutrition, and crop protection.
My new staff member and friend, Matt, is originally from Colorado but now lives in Melbourne with his partner Nikki. Matt comes from a family of microbiologists and is an expert on organics. He has been a great addition to the company. Matt also isn’t afraid to help pack orders and bottle, and he contributes to new product testing and development. Rene does the accounts and files, and makes sure I’m doing what I should be.
I currently do all the sales and marketing work, and have an excellent graphic artist that has helped develop my branding over the last few years.
Bio Diesel’s Future
The future of Bio Diesel Nutrients is focused around these key motivators: quality, health, relationships, and family values. We want to bring life and biology back into crops, in particular, coconut coir grown systems, which can hugely benefit from products like Aloevate and Bio Diesel, instead of mineral salt or chemical alternatives. Combine this with a good microbe inoculant like mykos, or many other microbe products, and growers will see the obvious quality difference and achieve amazing results with a deeper flavor and higher nutritional value.
Also, we are currently in the process of obtaining organic certification for Australia.
Constant innovation is important to us and allows us to introduce original products like our latest release, Marine CaMg+, which includes natural chitin calcium, amongst other natural ocean inputs, and has an extremely fast uptake time. This type of growth needs to be seen to be believed, but if your customers want to grow bigger, stronger plants, this is the one.
I believe we have come a long way since the early hydro-organic/bioponic products that used to put skins on tank water, block your pumps, and smell bad.
Bio Diesel products are fully and instantly soluble and run easily through your pumps and feed lines. They are also microbe-friendly with no bad odors and will help stabilize the pH of your solution.
Gaining Market Share
Customer feedback was so profound on our original Bio Diesel bloom enhancer that it started appearing on forums like George Cervantes. We are just getting started with our social media and, through word of mouth, have a very loyal following already and customer feedback has been outstanding.
Retailers love it because our products can be added to existing nutrient programs and are compatible with what their customers are already using. We are fortunate to be able to have such a big impact on customers’ yields while learning of quality increases reported back to us by so many retailers, loyal fans, and first-time users.
We are currently in the process of launching our new website so stay tuned as we want to reward all our loyal fans and customers. Look for some great new promo gear over the next few weeks with help from Jumble Clothing Co., an up-and-coming Melbourne-based clothing company.
Moving forward, I am grateful to be surrounded by a fantastic network of family, friends, and industry professionals. We need to work together on creating healthy, sustainable products for the future that provide the highest medicinal and nutritional value.
Most of all, it’s my friends and family that keep the wheels turning, especially Rene and our two daughters who keep me motivated.
I would also like to thank all the Australian retail store owners and conscious customers that have supported and believed in Bio Diesel products from the beginning, and help share a vision of sustainable nutrient products that are healthy and natural alternatives to chemicals.
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