I met Jeremy Silva, owner of Build A Soil, at the 2015 Emerald Cup in Santa Rosa, California. Build A Soil is based in Montrose, Colorado, a small northwestern Colorado farming town a couple hours North of Telluride. Jeremy has a tremendous amount of positive energy and passion and anyone that meets him can feel his energy. It is hard to leave a conversation with him without being impressed with his knowledge and passion for products and supply. I was intrigued from the moment I met him. Alan Adkisson of Gro-Kashi introduced us at the 2015 Emerald Cup. Build A Soil is one of the companies in the industry that understands and educates users about Probiotic Farming™ and the importance of beneficial runoff. If you are a grower, chances are you are already familiar with his company. If you plan to start growing, you may want to take a look at what his company has to offer.
Jeremy started Build A Soil in 2013. He was in the first group of beta testers in Alan’s Facebook Group: The Probiotic Farmers Alliance. His inquisitive nature inspires him to learn more each day and misinformation within the industry (from customers and vendors) frustrates him. Taking this into account he decided to start supplying small growers with trusted soil formulations and growing solutions. Since he wants to be completely transparent, he posts his recipes on his website. This gives customers the ability to buy components separately or save themselves the extra work and get it ready to go from his company. The Build A Soil website is designed so customers can substitute what they would like in the recipe as well, making it customizable to their specific growing needs. It is obvious that Build A Soil is all about the customer from the start.
Chris Petermann of Maku Organics says, “Build A Soil is great from a grower perspective because I can get customized formulations and they are quick to fulfill orders. They also have a no questions asked policy if there are any issues with orders.”
Build A Soil takes a unique and diligent approach to choosing which products they offer. One could say they use a “trust and verify” approach. They will listen to a vendor’s claims, get some of the product, and then run their own tests to verify the claims made by the vendor. If the analysis comes back different, the vendor can be guaranteed to receive a questioning call or email from Jeremy. If he isn’t satisfied with the response, he will not carry the product. To him, his customers don’t deserve something that he can’t stand behind. This thorough vetting of products comes from Jeremy’s passion. He will not carry something he does not feel like he can completely support. It is this style that provides his customers with confidence in sourcing ingredients from Build A Soil.
During the past 2 years the company has grown dramatically. I witnessed this during my visit in August 2016, when there was a constant stream of customers coming in to get help with their growing needs. They currently have two buildings, one is a shipping and receiving warehouse where orders are packed and shipped. This building also serves as an office and retail site as well as a mini lab where products are tested. Some of these tests include using a microscope. Other tests include using a small greenhouse where soil mixes are tested as well as experiments with some grow lights Build A Soil offers. The other building is a storage packaging area where the soils are mixed and some other inputs are packaged. Jeremy is hoping to expand by adding a third building to keep up with growing demand.
Although their initial focus has been small gardens and farms that may only be a few acres, Jeremy says he has been getting more and more requests from larger farms. In 2017 he plans to start approaching farms locally and will then expand with demand.
If you are growing, I suggest you take a look Build A Soil. They carry a large variety of soils and inputs that have all been tested and verified by Build A Soil employees. For more information visit BuildASoil.com or call 855-877-SOIL.
Eric Lancaster is Executive Vice President of TeraGanix, Inc., the exclusive North America distributor of Effective Microorganisms® and EM® Bokashi products. He is the technical expert on Effective Microorganisms® for the US market. For more information visit TeraGanix.com.