Created by Farmers, for Farmers
A division of Engineering Services and Products Co. (ESAPCO), Growers Supply was established in 1979 as a catalogue merchandiser with a focus on bringing the highest quality products to its customers at very competitive prices. Since its inception, Growers Supply has served over 300,000 loyal and satisfied customers around the world, a number that continues to grow…
With exceptional manufacturing, customer service and accommodating financing options, Growers Supply is helping to reinforce the viability and sustainability of the agricultural and horticultural sectors, in addition to servicing retail trade communities as a one-stop-shop to meet all of its customers’ needs.
Founded by Chuck Clark and Barry Goldsher in Connecticut, Growers Supply was, and still is, a company built by and operated by farmers, for farmers. Regardless of your agricultural or horticultural endeavor, Growers Supply has the products that you need. Growers Supply has high quality products, structures, and solutions that address diverse applications.
Growers Supply has significantly grown since 1979, expanding its capacities, offerings, and ability to meet and surpass the needs of its clients. As technology and innovation improve the products and processes that are used in agricultural and horticultural applications, Growers Supply ensures that it remains ahead of industry trends.
Once a regional two-person operation, Growers Supply now comprises a growing team. Located at its corporate headquarters and customer service call center in South Windsor, Connecticut are the company’s leadership team, sales department, finance department, as well as Growers’ Supply’s marketing and creative teams, while its manufacturing facility and distribution center is located 1,100 miles away in Dyersville, Iowa. Iowa is home to Growers Supply’s customer service team as well as a research and development team and showcase farm. On the 40 acre Iowa campus there is a fully functioning hydroponic greenhouse, aquaponic greenhouse, and a fodder production building.
Jon Kozlowski, Sales Team Leader with Growers Supply, describes the Iowa campus as “spectacular to visit,” a manufacturing facility and showcase farm that really conveys a sense of the company’s production capabilities and its dedication to the industry. “We like to say we put our money where our mouth is and we have a lot of our growing systems up and running, understanding how those systems work, using them for research and development, being able to offer the opportunity for our customers to visit and see those systems in operation.”
He continued, “It’s a benefit to our customers that they are working directly with the manufacturer. We are engineering, specifying, and manufacturing all of our own buildings and greenhouse structures, so that gives the customer that comforting sense of working directly with the manufacturer.” Growers Supply greenhouse specialists have a deep knowledge of the products offered and truly understand the industries they serve.
“You’re not simply calling a call center,” he added, “you’re calling a company that understands your business and is staffed by greenhouse experts who have shared the same experiences that our customers have, so our expertise within the industry is important and that’s what our customers have come to trust.”
Each year the company mails over 23 million catalogues which are distributed across an expansive global network. In doing so, Growers Supply brings its repertoire of over 30,000 products to a wide customer base, serving these customers with exceptional service and offering guaranteed same day shipping to arrive anywhere in the continental U.S. within a week.
“We really, truly understand what our customers are going through and the sense of urgency behind a lot of the inquiries and what they are trying to accomplish,” shared Kozlowski. “Being able to respond quickly to our customers’ requests is a really important part of our business.”
Growers Supply offers commercial greenhouses, cold frames, high tunnels, commercial aquaponic systems, hydroponic systems, and greenhouse supplies such as fans, vents, shelving, plastic film, and lighting, in addition to seed starting supplies, nursery carts and wagons. Other items that can be found in Growers Supply’s catalogue are raised bed kits, shade cloth, nursery and gardening supplies, as well as other products necessary to support and manage greenhouses, nurseries, businesses, and homes.
ESAPCO’s ClearSpan building line has served as a catalyst for the company’s growth and success. The rafter is designed to span the length of the building which allows for free movement and efficient use of space. The design incorporates the strength of polyethylene in the cover, allowing natural light to enter the space, making it ideal for many uses as a low-cost alternative to traditional structures.
“That was a real revolution for us,” described Kozlowski. “Cornering the fabric building market really helped the company grow and really took our manufacturing capabilities to the next level.” By investing in the company’s manufacturing abilities and understanding market trends, Growers Supply was able to get out in front of the industry and take building design and innovation to the next level.
This is especially true of the company’s truss designs, building profiles, greenhouse designs, and hydroponic systems. The technology and innovation that has been adopted into these systems and designs have positioned Growers Supply as an industry leader, advocating sustainable growth while pushing forward with new products and processes.
Taking the cannabis industry for example, “Our greenhouse designs and the technologies that we’ve engineered into those structures, such as automated light deprivation systems, our ability to completely design and control greenhouse environments, those capabilities and that type of innovation – that is the future of the company,” Kozlowski explained.
Another way in which Growers Supply helps to advance the industries and sectors it serves is through flexible financing options. Through its own in-house financing, without the need for outside banks or lending institutes, Growers Supply offers flexible financing options that can include zero interest loans or deferred payment plans.
Growers Supply understands and appreciates the challenges associated with restricted cash flow sensitivities at varying times of the year. Kozlowski noted, “There are a lot of times where our financing is directly influencing the customer’s success, the fact that they might not even have been able to get their project off the ground if it wasn’t for that financing.”
With a background in agriculture, having spent 15 years as a vegetable and fruit farmer and winery owner, Kozlowski, and the team at Growers Supply, have significant industry knowledge and take great pride in the impact they have on their customers’ operations and success. “I’ve been in those positions where you are really crunching the numbers and you are thinking, ‘How am I going to expand this business? How am I going to get this next greenhouse? How am I going to get this next hydroponic system?’ and Growers Supply and Farmtek are how those customers can do that,” shared Kozlowski of his own personal experience and pride in his current role with the company.
Acknowledging the decline in farmable land around the world and the continuously increasing global population, Kozlowski views sustainable agriculture as a powerful movement that is gaining momentum. An increasingly conscious population wants to know where and how their food is grown; this is an exciting opportunity for small farmers to capitalize on the local food movement.
Growers Supply helps to make these processes more efficient and effective, providing the knowledge, tools, and products necessary to support this trend to facilitate stronger local agricultural production systems around the world. “We’re talking with farmers in Africa who are concerned about growing their own feed for their animals. We’re talking to farmers in South America who realize that hydroponic lettuce production is a much more efficient and sustainable way of growing food in their areas. We’re talking with people all over this country who are thinking the same way,” explained Kozlowski.
With the continued drought conditions impacting California’s agricultural production, these concerns have become even more urgent. Through its Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) Hands-On Workshops, Growers Supply brings people together from around the world in groups of between 40 and 50 people, offering a three day course to individuals interested in its agricultural production systems and products.
“These workshops allow our customers to come to our facilities and allow them to hear from industry experts,”added Kozlowski. “We draw from a number of local experts from local universities, from our vendors, as well as our own customers who have experienced success and want to pass on that passion and knowledge.”
The goal at Growers Supply is to continue to be at the forefront of the industry, continuing to listen to customers’ needs and address those needs in a timely and supportive fashion. Growers Supply takes great pride in its ability to work with customers to custom design and manufacture products when necessary. As the manufacturer, Growers Supply has that flexibility and capacity.
One of the ways in which the commitment to the customer is upheld is through a strong employee culture and the dedication of company leadership to continue to be solutions providers, regardless of how large the company becomes or how diverse the product offerings are. “The culture is awesome,” Kozlowski shared of his first impression when he started work with Growers Supply. As a previous customer, he understands that Growers Supply represents the coming together of bright minds from the industry who are truly committed to their customers’ success.
“Our team wants to see our customers succeed. We get to be part of cool projects every single day and we get to be a part of emerging industries and create designs and innovations for those industries… We’re listening. We’re working with growers, we’re hearing what they have to say, what their needs are and then designing the products that they need. It’s unbelievable!”
Growers Supply continues to develop its technological, design, and manufacturing capabilities. Its high-quality products and competitive prices continue to facilitate the growth and success of the company and the industry as a whole, improving the viability and sustainability of agricultural production worldwide.