Golf's sustainability movement strides forward as more and more people combine their commitment and action with innovation. New solutions - from supportive programmes to innovative products - work in tandem to make a real difference.
Two likeminded organisations have come together to help raise awareness and understanding, backed by practical solutions. The Golf Environment Organization (GEO), and The Great Turf Company, both started and headquartered in Scotland, are each focused on bringing greater sustainability into golf.
GEO is a stakeholder-funded not-for-profit organization working to guide, support and motivate the global golf industry around sustainability, administering golf's international ecolabel, GEO Certified™ and delivering practical guidance and programmes that are followed to earn the distinction.
The Great Turf Company has invested a great deal into developing biological solutions for the finest turf, with a unique 'Activated Microbial Turf Management' methodology designed to restore natural balance in turf and soil. Their range of turf nutrition products includes compost tea systems and naturally sourced granular and liquid feeds formulated to optimise turf health naturally, reducing chemical dependency, 'feeding the soil' and maintaining a healthy soil environment, which is key to healthy turf. Current users of these products include Open Championship golf courses and Premiership football clubs.
Strong, healthy turf is fundamental for golf and achieving this in an environmentally-friendly, safe and cost-effective way was a motivator for Machrihanish Dunes who introduced The Great Turf Company's biological approach during the time they were working toward their GEO Certified™ award. Estonian Golf and Country Club also recently began using Great Turf Company products, adopting an outlook in which sustainability is factored into their selection of products and maintenance practices. The Club is currently in the GEO OnCourse™ programme and working toward GEO Certified™.
Ian Morrison, Managing Director for The Great Turf Company commented on the synergy between the two organisations:
"We have made it our mission to advocate the benefits of good soil biology for a safer, sustainable future for turfgrass management. Without biology soil is merely dirt; but with a thriving microbial population soil becomes the complete solution to plant health.
"We share GEO's belief in golf's potential to deliver real and valued results for sustainability, and we are very proud to support GEO in growing the business of sustainable golf."
Jimmy Kidd, The Great Turf Company Global Development Director added:
"The Great Turf Company was founded less than two years ago but has grown rapidly in that short time, now operating in many countries across the world.
"Activated Microbial Turf Management is quickly becoming a driving force for turf care at golf courses across the UK and Europe and we are now in the process of expanding into further international markets as demand for sustainable turf care reaches an all time high. Through collaboration with GEO we are able to align with their global environmental agenda, sharing knowledge and raising awareness for greater benefit to turf managers and the overall reputation of world golf."
GEO Chief Executive Jonathan Smith said of the new partnership:
"We are very excited about this partnership, as an prime example of the value we place on partnerships with industry manufacturers and suppliers who are delivering effective business solutions around golf's sustainability agenda.
"In a world of ever more extreme drought and rainfall, chemical regulation and a growing value in high quality soil, The Great Turf Company are filling a very important space. They are bringing forward well-tested products with proven benefits and produced from materials that are natural and recycled. As a growing, forward-looking business, it says a great deal that they would support the not-for-profit work that GEO does to foster credible sustainability progress in golf clubs and developments around the world."
About The Golf Environment Organization
GEO is a stakeholder-funded, not-for-profit organization, dedicated to helping the global golf community establish leadership in environmental enhancement and corporate responsibility. GEO Certified™ is the world's most constructive and credible ecolabel, specifically for golf course and club management.
GEO works with golf, government and environmental organizations worldwide, including The European Tour, United Nations Environment Programme, The R&A, and many national golf federations, managers associations, owners groups and greenkeepers/superintendent associations. For more information, please visit www.golfenvironment.org
About The Great Turf Company
The Great Turf Company specialise in biological solutions for the fine turf industry with a unique 'Activated Microbial Turf Management' methodology. They supply a range of natural turf nutrition products across the UK and Europe.
For further information, please visit www.greatturfcompany.com