The guilty verdict for Monsanto in August’s landmark US litigation case, has seen an unprecedented US$289 million payout to a grounds maintenance worker.
He is the first of over 4000 in the US suing Monsanto as a result of developing non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a range of cancers of the lymphatic system as a result of workplace exposure to Roundup. This has made insurers and landscape managers look for alternatives to sending their workers out with herbicides.
The number of Australian contractors who are reducing risks for their clients* and their employees by delivering organic Satusteam™ weed control solutions is growing rapidly. A few in SE Queensland and northern NSW have built solid leading businesses in this space.
CMC Landscape http://www.cmclandscapes.com.au have been using their Satusteam© SW900 machine since 2015. Company owners Kristy and Lucas Arkadieff contacted Weedtechnics not long after their first child was born. Kristy said, “Our six-month-old baby had serious digestive issues, her immune system was depressed, Lucas had chronic pain and we all had high levels of toxins in our bodies.” These series of health issues triggered Kristy to start looking closer at what they exposed themselves to. After realising glyphosate was a possible carcinogen and used a lot in their business, they started researching for the best alternative. After a lot of research they couldn’t find anything better than the SW900 that was as effective or productive.
Now their goal is to be a sustainable, chemical free company by 2019. The Satusteam© machine is an integral part of their chemical free offering and has proved to be efficacious and safe for their staff and the environments they look after. Some of the benefits they are experiencing:
- Peace of mind that they can control weeds without harming the environment.
- Safe to use on spaces used by children and the elderly leaving no residual toxins.
- Safe for their workers to use, mitigating exposure to harmful exposure to chemicals.
Tali and Jono Shelley are siblings and together have a holistic land restoration company Bushtekniq, http://www.bushtekniq.org. They purchased their SW900 from Weedtechnics in March 2018. Being a chem-free bush regeneration business from their commencement has allowed them to explore a world full of ‘tools n tekniqs’ for holistic land management. Their projects include bushland sites for council, community and land-holders. Together they facilitate workshops and presentations on holistic land management around the theme: relearn regenerate reconnect.
- Using the SW900 aligns with their ethos of holistic land management. Tali said in relation to their specialty of land restoration, “Saturated steam weeding is a specialised tool, ideal for zones which are difficult to hand weed or are being dominated with a carpet of weeds like Singapore Daisy. Satusteam application in these zones is ideal before replanting with native species.”
- Tali explained that the training and support provided by Weedtechnics founder, Jeremy Winer, with his knowledge and innovation, assisted them to feel more confident in the effectiveness of Satusteam™ in a bushland setting on some of the more vigorous weeds. The 60m reach of the delivery hoses makes most of their sites reasonably easy to manage. Some of the benefits they have experienced include:
- Using Satusteam© to manage a site allows people to interact more safely with their environment or ‘connect to country’ without exposing themselves (or their animals) to harmful herbicides.
Managing weeds with Satusteam™ has minimal disturbance on soil structure and can contribute to the level of organic matter in the soil and the overall health of each site.
Using Satusteam™ alongside other holistic land management techniques enables efficient and effective outcomes long term. Satusteam™ weeding takes the hard work out of intensive hand weeding on land management projects. Steam Weeders http://www.steamweeders.com.au in Byron bay is a division of Garden Warrior an established local landscape maintenance business run by Paul Sommers. Paul jumped on board with his first SW machine in 2013 and pioneered some of the pilot program work done by Bryron Shire Council who now run their own unit.
Paul has included Satusteam™ weed control in his service offerings to his clients including Byron Central Hospital and local schools in his area. An added service that he uses his SW900 for is low pressure high temperature cleaning, which alows rapid removal of gum and grease, cleaning of landscape assets and paving, without harsh abrasion or soaps.
By using the growing range of SW machines and applicator heads from Weedtechnics, innovative contractors are achieving social, economic and environmental objectives, whilst providing efficient and viable vegetation management. Their clients are reducing their risk of litigation associated with chemical weed control and delivering least toxic weed management to their communities. There is a paradigm shift occurring and everyone benefits.