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Company Profile

< American Vanguard Sustainability Report

American Vanguard Corporation (the Company) is a diversified specialty and agricultural products company focusing on crop protection, turf and ornamental markets, and public health applications. The Company has continued its successful strategy of acquiring or licensing both new and well-established product lines that serve numerous high valued market niches. New product development and international expansion also provide an additional stimulus for growth. Through skillful marketing, diligent product registration, quality manufacturing, American Vanguard has positioned itself to meet the needs of a world demanding ever-increasing quantities of agricultural products for human food, animal feed, natural fibers and alternative fuels.

American Vanguard’s wholly-owned subsidiary, AMVAC Chemical Corporation (AMVAC) serves U.S. and international growers through development and manufacturing of products for agricultural, commercial, and turf use. AMVAC also develops patented closed delivery and precision application technologies that also address the complex challenges that growers face on a daily basis. The Company is committed to protecting public and animal health, safeguarding the food we consume from damaging pests and disease, while enhancing the overall quality of the environment where we live and work. 




 

Operations and Supply Chain
AMVAC operates four manufacturing and formulation facilities strategically located in the U.S. that provide flexible production of high-quality products. Our commitment to safe, efficient operations is demonstrated in the strategies, decisions, and ultimately the culture of responsibility and accountability at each of our locations. 

In addition to manufacturing a large percentage of our products in our U.S. facilities, we source raw materials, intermediates and finished products from partners both domestic and foreign. As with any prudent business, we regularly revisit make-versus-buy decisions. However, while many of our competitors had extended their sourcing to Asia, particularly China, over the past several years, we have done so conservatively. In fact, while over half of the pesticide products used in the United States come from China, our imports from that country are closer to ten percent. Further, to the extent that we continue to source from China, we have formed a local procurement team who maintain relationships with Chinese and other Asian suppliers. As the supply chain changes, we continually reach out to reliable third party suppliers throughout the globe and, wherever possible, establish multiple sources for goods. In addition, we make full use of our own production facilities whenever possible and economical. 

At AMVAC, we source raw materials through GemChem, Inc., a Connecticut-based wholly-owned subsidiary of American Vanguard. GemChem and our Logistics and Transportation Departments manage every aspect required for the safe, secure and cost-efficient sourcing, logistics, transporting and handling of the high quality raw materials used in our products. We have long-standing relationships with many key supply and logistics partners, including toll manufacturers and formulators, conducting quality assurance reviews that include raw materials sampling and analysis. In addition, we review the quality and security-related policies, procedures and operations of our partners, including their compliance with federal transportation and security requirements, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and similar laws.

 



Products

American Vanguard is committed to providing a variety of sustainable and beneficial solutions that enable abundant agricultural production, effective public health protection, and valued turf, ornamental and commercial pest control.

Along with modern agricultural practices, our products help farmers to maximize the yield from existing farmlands to conserve natural lands, while protecting crops, retaining soil moisture and nutrients, and improving crop quality across the globe.

We also create tailor-made solutions to meet the growing needs of non-agricultural customers. Golf courses and commercial greenhouses benefit from our turf and ornamental products, while public health agencies use our insecticides to protect against vector-borne diseases such as West Nile Virus. Pest control operators use our products to combat termites, bed bugs and other pests.

Our long-standing efforts to develop and market biological, microbial and essential oil-based products have been enhanced with the acquisitions of Grupo AgriCenter and OHP, Inc. in 2017, and TyraTech in 2018. These investments demonstrate our increased focus and commitment to established and emerging biological and microbial products in the U.S. and international markets. 

We maintain and actively support our products’ domestic and international registrations, whether proprietary or generic. In the U.S., for example, our products are registered with the Environmental Protection Agency in accordance with the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). These registrations require ongoing scientific study and risk analysis to ensure the products are in compliance with government regulations and do not pose an unreasonable risk of harm to people or the environment when used according to label instructions. Our focus on U.S.-based manufacturing helps ensure consistent product quality and availability.

AMVAC Diversified Participation – as of 12/31/2018


Product Stewardship
Our Product Stewardship program is among the best in the crop protection industry. We work with and train growers, develop and expand technology, and invest in and support new and more efficient products, as part of our commitment to minimize our impact on the environment while maintaining maximum results. Our teams identify issues and face them head on to create solutions – to increase yields, address emerging and restrictive regulations, minimize resistance, and improve manufacturing efficiency. These efforts are ingrained in our culture and operations and described here, and also throughout this report as part of our Core Values.

Integrated Pest Management
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is a system that coordinates pest control methods with pest and environmental information to economically and safely prevent unacceptable levels of pest damage with the least possible hazard to people, property, and the environment. IPM seeks to balance environmental and economic concerns, taking into account resource sustainability and health and environmental safety as well as crop yields and profit. While IPM is a long-established approach, what matters to AMVAC are our results – putting the approach into practice in partnership with distribution, retail, end-users, extension programs and others. We have created a sustainable business model with customer relationships that go beyond partnerships – we are interdependent because of the high value we provide each other.

Fumigants
We work with growers to provide training on proper fumigant use, handling and management to minimize any drift resulting from application. Our carefully designed processes ensure our customers use the necessary amount and not a drop more, while Farm Management Plans help growers understand and deal with new regulations governing use of our products.

Closed Delivery Systems
Closed delivery systems help AMVAC and our customers harness technology to apply the correct and necessary amounts of granular insecticides. These systems mine and examine data to develop placement, timing, and rates of product delivery relative to yield and quality of harvest, which can sometimes result in decreases in the amount of AMVAC products used. The systems enable consistent and predicable remote application of the products, and allow products to be applied below ground to minimize risk to birds and wildlife. In addition, the product is delivered in sealed application containers, which limits worker exposure during transfer and management of product. AMVAC works with our customers to continually upgrade technology and systems to maximize product efficiency.

Grupo AgriCenter Founded on Environmental and Social Responsibility
In 2017, AMVAC Netherlands BV acquired Grupo AGRICenter (Agricenter), a well-established distributor of multiple crop protection products in seven Central American and Caribbean countries, which effectively tripled the Company’s Latin American presence. Agricenter’s success is centered on its proven customer-focused consulting and problem solving services, along with its balanced product mix and commitment to innovation, social responsibility and environmental awareness. Agricenter partners with Greenplants Corp., a developer of unique plant nutrient and micronutrient formulations, and is the distributor of several leading companies of the Crop Protection business.

Agricenter has been committed to corporate social responsibility, employee development, environmental health, and occupational safety since its founding in 2001. Agricenter became the first Latin American agricultural chemical company to achieve Carbon Neutral certification in 2017.


OHP: A Success Story

OHP Launches and Expands BioSolutions Product Line
In keeping with AMVAC’s strategy of expansion via well-established and highly valued acquisitions, in October 2017 AMVAC acquired OHP Inc., a leading provider of technology-based pesticide solutions for greenhouse and nursery production applications. In addition to offering conventional insecticides, fungicides, miticides, herbicides and plant growth regulators, in 2017 OHP formally launched OHP Biosolutions, a portfolio of microbial and biological products, many of which are reduced risk products, compatible with beneficial insects and carry short restricted entry intervals (REI).

OHP’s history of marketing biological products dates back to 1995, when it began selling Azatin XL biological insecticide which contains azadirachtin, and now markets an enhanced Azatin O formulation as well as products with biological active ingredients neem oil, copper hydroxide, fatty acid soaps, natural pyrethrins, and strains of naturally occurring fungi and bacteria, such as Bacillus thuringiensis. OHP’s portfolio now includes nine biological products, seven of which are OMRI Listed® and allowed under organic standards, after review by the Organic Materials Review Institute. OHP is constantly seeking new technology based biological products for its portfolio with several currently under evaluation. The biological portion of OHP’s portfolio continues to expand as the products are incorporated into programs which are either exclusively biological in scope or rotated with conventional chemistries.

Since 2016, OHP has been developing a biological insecticide/miticide that combines refined canola oil with natural pyrethrins, a group of six natural-plant chemicals extracted from the seed cases of the pyrethrum daisy. Introduced in 2018, Pycana™ harnesses the combined modes of action of pyrethrins and botanical oils for broad spectrum control of insects and mites on flowers, shrubs, fruits and vegetables grown in greenhouses, shadehouses, hoop houses and container nurseries. OHP is in the process of obtaining OMRI Listing for Pycana, and is focusing additional research and development work on effectiveness against additional pests, crop safety, and compatibility with other OHP biological products.

Natural pyrethrins are a group of six natural-plant chemicals extracted from the seed cases of the pyrethrum daisy, Chrysanthemum (tanacetum) cinerariaefolium (Asteraceae). Ground flower heads and pyrethrum extracts have been used as botanical insecticides for centuries. Natural pyrethrins are effective against pests in specialty crops, however they rapidly degrade in the environment by ultraviolet light and oxidation. Botanical oils inhibit the natural degradation of pyrethrins, while the combination of the two has a synergistic effect, and has become a promising tool for growers, while less likely to lead to insect resistance compared to frequent use of synthetic pyrethroid compounds.