Scotts huddles with EPA about offering marijuana pesticides

Just Released! Get realistic market forecasts, state-by-state insights and benchmarks with the new 2024 MJBiz Factbook member program, now with quarterly updates. Make informed decisions.

Lawn care giant Scotts Miracle-Gro, which has made a string of cannabis-related acquisitions, is now looking to get into another industry niche, albeit a controversial one: pesticides.

Scotts CEO Jim Hagedorn said during a conference call with analysts that his company has been in talks with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency about creating a pesticide that can be used on cannabis, the Columbus (Ohio) Business Journal reported.

Scotts’ proposal is significant because the cannabis industry has no standard rules governing pesticide use. The EPA regulates pesticides in the United States but has not authorized their use on cannabis because the plant is illegal on a federal basis.

“We’ll be the only ones offering pesticidal products that can be used on cannabis,” Hagedorn told analysts while discussing the company’s earnings, according to the Columbus Business Journal. “So I think that’s an opportunity for us.”

For its 2016 fiscal year, Ohio-based Scotts rang up $2.84 billion in revenue, the Columbus Business Journal reported. Some of the company’s revenue growth has come from ancillary grow equipment and supply companies acquired by Scotts’ subsidiary Hawthorne Gardening.

Banking giant JPMorgan, meanwhile, repeated its “overweight” rating for Scotts’ stock and boosted its price target, saying the company’s hydroponics business will continue to bolster its share value, CNBC reported.