To help growers meet the new sustainable growing media challenges that lie ahead, ICL Professional Horticulture has further strengthened its technical team appointing Stuart Gammage to the role of Technical Manager for Growing Media in Ireland and the UK.
With nearly 30 years’ practical hands-on growing and technical experience – gained at a leading UK nursery based in Suffolk – Stuart joined ICL as the Technical Area Sales Manager for East Anglia in 2015. Acquiring extensive knowledge of ICL’s evolving growing media portfolio, he has also assisted in the development and launch of new professional-grade peat alternatives. This includes the highly consistent, professional woodfibre substrate – Fibagro Advance, manufactured in the UK from FSC sourced wood using ICL’s unique thermo-mechanical process.
“Stuart brings a wealth of practical experience and knowledge of our growing media to this role,” says Stephen Squires, ICL Vice President – Regional Business Lead. “In Ireland he will be working closely with ICL’s Brendan Howell.
“Working with a diverse range of ornamental nurseries, Stuart has worked tirelessly with UK growers helping them reduce, or eliminate, their reliance on peat based growing media – earning the respect of many. Stuart understands exactly what is required at a grower level to meet the practical challenges of moving to sustainable growing media mixes.
“In his new nationwide role, Stuart will help ICL further develop its sustainable growing media offering and support implementation of new digital systems to enhance communication to customers. He will assist our experienced team of Technical Area Sales Managers, supporting them in the market as well as working directly with growers – to help them phase out peat usage in the Professional sector over time.”
Commenting on his new role, Stuart says; “I’m very much looking forward to working with growers in Ireland and across the UK to help them meet these new challenges. Working in a highly adaptable industry that is changing fast, I am confident most sectors have the potential to transition over to peat free alternatives using ICL’s peat free Sustain options. These professional-grade mixes incorporate the latest innovative ICL wetting agents and controlled release nutrient technologies designed to optimise plant performance in sustainable substrates.”
As Technical Manager for Growing Media, Stuart will work closely Brendan Howell (ICL Sales Development Manager for Professional Horticulture across Ireland) and David Bellmont (ICL’s Operations Director), and work alongside Dr Eleni Siasou (R&D Manager for Growing Media).