MFG Game Changers: Gantec

This article appeared in the May/Jun 2024 issue of MiMfg Magazine. Read the full issue and find past issues online.

Ric Olson, President and Co-Founder of Gantec Inc., has traveled around the world dozens of times to find the strongest plants on Earth, and then has used their essential elements to make other plants more resilient and sustainable — all while protecting the ecosystem.

Based in Midland, Gantec’s goal is to revolutionize how agricultural professionals yield crops. With unique and proprietary sourcing, extraction and formulation processes, Gantec has created more than 12 products designed for specific plants to enable them to grow faster and more fruitfully. Their products include those for animal feed and specific fruits and vegetables, and additional products are under development.

Other businesses have similar products but Gantec’s processes and extraction technology are revolutionary in the industry.

“We identify what we call extremophilic plants that thrive in extreme conditions around the world, take those seeds or leaves, extract from them the specific chemistry that we are interested in and then use that to formulate products that can be applied to plants or animals,” Olson says.

Gantec’s products — which are typically applied through the plant’s roots or foliage, by using existing application systems feeds or into the soil — improve a plant’s ability to access the nutrients it needs to thrive. The fertilizers, micronutrients, concentrates and soon-to-come biopesticides are all-natural, and they offer an economic benefit through more productive, higher-quality crops. They also minimize the use of pesticides and other chemicals, reducing collateral damage in the ecosystem, according to Olson.

As a real-life example, a farmer in Michigan told Olson that he had lost $300,000 in the past due to bitter pit disorder in his apples. Gantec then developed a solution to essentially “teach” the apples how to protect and nourish themselves.

Plants can’t move, so they’re stuck with the environments they have, Olson explains.

“Our chemistry allows the apple tree to move calcium to the plant in a more efficient fashion,” Olson says. “Now, instead of a 50 percent loss of crop, it’s down to 5 percent, and he has held that for five years.”

Farmers do still need the traditional products, Olson says, but Gantec’s solutions enhance them.

“It’s sort of an actuator for the plant to be able to capture the nutritional value it needs to produce the nutrients that it’s meant to produce,” Olson says. “There’s a lot we still don’t know about this, but what we do know is that we are changing the plant’s capacity to produce what it needs to be fruitful.”

Olson says they will continue to innovate in this space and that they already have many ideas for businesses both inside and outside of the agricultural field.

“It took us 20 years to get to where we are, but we can also see 20 years down the road,” he says. “We have several generations of improvements in our heads and under development that should keep us growing ahead of the curve for the next two decades.”

When it comes to Gantec, innovation is its foundation, and the company continues to lead the way toward revolutionary changes in agriculture.

Learn More About Our Gamechanger

Headquarters: Midland

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