In 1994, the average price of a new home was $119,050, Amazon.com registered its domain name, and Bill Clinton was sworn into his first term as president of the United States. Across the country that same year, field trials were underway for a game-changing product from Dow AgroSciences — the Sentricon® System. While the commercial launch would take place in 1995, field trials to prove the technology in all kinds of real-world situations were conducted by pest control companies selected to take part in the experimental use permit (EUP) trials.
In January 1994, Rod Haggerty of American Pest Control of Hanna City, Illinois, completed the first installation of Sentricon in the Midwest. He remembers it as a freezing cold day full of hard work.
“Unfortunately, that morning it was below zero and we were supposed to core some holes and insert some monitoring stakes, and that’s really all we knew,” says Haggerty. “But with the frozen ground it ended up being a very long day. We did install a couple stations, but we had to wait for a little warmer day before we could complete this job.”
“I remember that, at that first house, we had mistakenly left a shovel leaning against the house and came back to pick it up a week later and the termites had built a mud tube up that shovel and were eating the wooden handle,” he says. “So we felt like with the bait stations, the termites would have no problem finding them. If they can find a shovel handle, they definitely can find these bait stations, and, of course, they did.”
Bob Richardson of McCarthy Pest Control participated in four Sentricon System trials in the St. Louis area in 1994.
“I felt honored to be able to try Sentricon,” he says. “It was such a different shift in how we performed termite protection. I had to give it a little bit more time in order to really grasp onto it, but I believed that it was the product that it was touted to be. It wasn’t maybe a year or two when we actually installed Sentricon around some of our most troubled liquid jobs and saw the results in protection. We saw what it did to those colonies that were attacking homes. At that point, I became a believer.”
Lonnie Alonso, president of Columbus Pest Control in Ohio, also participated as an EUP company in trials for the Sentricon® System.
“We were given the opportunity to do three research projects to see how we liked it,” he said. “We liked it.”
Alonso also likes the changes he’s seen with Sentricon over the last 20 years.
“I’ve seen the continual improvement where Dow AgroSciences has listened to us Certified Sentricon Specialists to take our advice on certain issues,” he says. “The effectiveness of the product has continually improved and increased. Certainly the last change, Always Active technology, has been a major change for us and our business.”
The Baiting is Best Blog will share more stories about the 20th anniversary of the Sentricon System throughout 2015. If you’ve got a favorite story to share, let us know here.