In this feature, we turn the spotlight onto some of the key companies within our industry. In this edition, John Ralph, Managing Director of Sherwood Chemicals Australasia, explains how Sherwood has become a leader in product formulation.
As an international formulator that employs more than 500 people across Australia and Thailand, Sherwood Chemicals is emerging as a genuine supplier of consistent quality products for the pest control industry. Its products have proven performance backed by independent efficacy results and are supported by in-house R&D chemists and chemical engineers who operate out of a dedicated manufacturing facility in Bangkok, Thailand.
Sherwood Chemicals: Quick Facts
- Overview: Sherwood Chemicals formulates and manufactures environmentally sustainable professional pest, turf, ornamental, wood
- preservation and industrial cleaning products.
- Company size: Manufacturing facility in Thailand. 500+ employees worldwide.
- Specialisation: Formulation chemistry tailored to professional pest control.
- International reach: Australia and Southeast Asia.
- Notable products: Fipforce, Biforce, Chaindrite, Clearout, Termatrix.
Over the last 23 years Sherwood Chemicals has invested significantly in formulation chemistry. The formulation of the majority of insecticide products used by pest managers would typically comprise less than 20% active ingredient. Therefore, more than 80% of the formulation is comprised of inert ingredients that have a significant impact on the physio-chemical properties of the product and its performance.
As a formulation development company, Sherwood realised that if it was to be successful it needed to invest in a product testing facility, as relying on third party labs to trial formulations resulted in product delays and/or products being launched before they were perfected.
In 2016 Sherwood invested in a dedicated in-house product testing facility to improve the quality of its formulation technology. Using the development processes of the test centre, Sherwood can screen and optimise product formulations to target vector, structural and urban pests including mosquitoes, termites and cockroaches. In-house capability allows this development cycle to be completed in a short timeframe. Successful prototypes then commence independent efficacy trials to ensure the new, innovative formulations will deliver sustainable benefits to users.
Sherwood has unique expertise as a formulation specialist focused on state-of-the art formulation chemistry for small niche markets. This means we are focused on creating value for pest managers by helping them to deliver excellent results for their customers.
This approach to product development has afforded Sherwood some notable achievements. In 1995, Sherwood (then part of Shell) launched the first SC termiticide, Stedfast. Fast forward to 2014, after more than six years of formulation R&D and trials, Sherwood launched the first fipronil foam in a can, which was a great success. In 2018 Sherwood launched two new innovative products including the revolutionary Clearout Probiotic Foam Aerosol and Clearout Crawling insect spray, which incorporates fipronil.
Our innovation comes from listening to our customers. The Clearout range is a great example. Pest managers told us there was a need for targeted products packaged in a way that allowed for precise, effective application, and delivered excellent results. We did the research, created the formulations, and were very pleased to have delivered a solution that the market was calling out for.
Dedicated manufacturing facilities
Sherwood’s core insecticide products are manufactured at a single formulation facility in Thailand in accordance with ISO9001 (Quality), ISO14001 (Environment) and GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices). Mr Ralph asserts that Sherwood is the only formulator supplying to the professional pest industry that has all three of these certifications, which ensure all products supplied meet international standards with regards to quality.
The team develops all types of formulations, including emulsifiable concentrates, suspension concentrates, micro emulsions, micro encapsulations, aerosols, powders, baits, and foams – the full range of pest control products. Strict quality control measures ensure that each batch of formulation meets stringent standards and Certificates of Analysis are prepared for each batch.
We stand by our formulation chemistry and the results our products achieve. We carry out extensive efficacy testing during the development phase to ensure that our formulations always deliver on the performance claims.
Sherwood is currently working on a range of innovative, easy to use formulations for internal use in commercial situations. These formulations incorporate proven off- patent actives formulated using micro encapsulation technology to lure and kill insects and combat resistance.
As one of Southeast Asia’s largest aerosol formulators, Sherwood is also focused on releasing a range of cost- effective targeted aerosols to assist professionals in delivering value to their customers.
Over the last 30 years we saw the discovery of new actives, and I believe the next 30 years will see the advancement of formulation chemistry and its delivery – of which, I believe, Sherwood will be at the forefront.
In July 2020, Sherwood Chemicals will run a 1-2 day conference featuring guest speakers and a tour of its formulation facility in Thailand. Pest managers interested in attending should email Elton Arderne for more information.