As an inventor, something recently drew me back to my old interest in sprouting. I still have no large plans to grow commercially. But I am developing sprout-growing technology that could bring the industry to a new level of quality and automation. As my sprouting devices evolve in secret, I am publicly creating this website as a means to inform myself and others about the industry as it exists today and through its history. The information found in Grow Sprouts can be useful to us all.
The sprouting industry and people who grow sprouts at home, have always needed a link directory and guide to sprout-related topics. The new Grow Sprouts website aspires to provide an objective view of it all, with tips and facts, as well as being a preeminent starting point for sprout research or planning a sprout biz. Sprouting can be a wonderful hobby, home occupation or commercial venture.
Although I have specialized sprouting expertise going back to the 1970s, Grow Sprouts will focus instead mostly on general knowledge regarding the commercial sprouting industry and the home practice of sprouting. Grow Sprouts is two things. 1) It's a resource for sprouters and 2) It's a resource that I might use if and when I am able to patent and market a new kind of automated sprouting system and process within a few years.
A Long Overdue Sprouting Invention
Every now and then, over a period of decades, I worked on designs for sprouters. This often involved intense brainstorming. It eventually culminated in the raw concept for something truly revolutionary. Over time, I failed to prioritize this project. And concurrently, I watched in horror, as the sprouting industry has kept foisting sprouts of ghastly low quality onto the marketplace at a profit. Thus it dawned on me that I was given a divine gift, an inspiration that most likely will change the systemology of sprouting at every level from kitchen to commercial production at the largest scale.
There is potentially a vast industry here, one that is already large, but only in a tiny way compared to its true potential. Thus I have realized that it will be a life-failing if I do not finalize, patent and market my revolutionary sprouter. Yes, I want to prosper from my invention. But the greater joy will be seeing it adopted by industry.
In the meantime, I want to know the sprouting industry better, so that I will be ready if and when my sprouting inventions find their way to market. And I will share with others, any general knowledge that I learn about the industry. I am not looking for investors or money. I intend to finance my own path.
For the time being, I intend to remain anonymous here using an online "handle", since I have nothing to gain from publicity. I have no interest in angel investors. And I am not seeking funds of any kind. In fact, Grow Sprouts is not selling anything. But some of you will know me from youth and perhaps remember my eary days as a sprouter.
I eventually brainstormed through hundreds, perhaps thousands of hours over several decades before the light went on. In a moment of eureka, I conceived the ultimate system. And recently, I may have found enough financial security that I might be able to afford a reputable and comprehensive patent attorny, to set this path in motion. That move is now delayed only by the need to work out some sideline aspects of the invention and creation of a working prototype.
I have never been more than a home commercial grower. And that was decades ago. In 1975, at the age of 23, in Boulder, Colorado, I began home growing fairly large amounts of alfalfa sprouts, along with mungs, rye, lentil and other varieties. My sprouts were a hit sensation. The first person to taste my sprouts and encourage me to grow them for sale was well-known healing advocate and local health food pioneer Hanna Kroeger of New Age Foods. I also fondly recall long distance telephone conversations with Anne Wigmore, who shared my enthusiasm. I branded my sprout bags with the tradename "Primo Living Foods". (More recently I discoverd that there is a food company called Primo Foods, that has no connection to my early sprouting endeavors.) Just about everyone who tried my sprouts prefered them over the big brand that existed locally at that time (Life Force, who has since gone out of business). I sold my home grown sprout varieties at a few restaurants and stores in Boulder for a few years. A baker loved my rye sprouts. My alfs were loved at Carnival Cafe, a busy vegetarian restaurant.
My sprout plans attracted about twelve thousand dollars in unexpected investment offers from two strangers and one personal acquaintance. But it came at the worst time when I had other life problems, in 1977. I walked away from this opportunity to avoid risking debt and failure.
I'm a Diverse Creative with a Passion for Sprouting Technology and Healthy Diet
Today I spend my time doing literary writing, fantastic photography, songwriting and so much else in the arts world without making a dime. But I sustain a small income through investing and stock trading while I write film plots and aspire to be a filmmaker. I've never lost faith in this direction, since it took root. I'm just not cut out to run a huge sprouting corporation even though I'm sure it would make me mighty rich. Nevertheless, I am committed to investing serious time and money to develop my patents and bring revolutionary sprouters to the industry. I'm also interested in helping friends who want to grow and market superior sprouts.
Despite my aversion to corporate food production, I may start a company to license my sprouting technology at some point. First I need to get settled. I'm ready to start looking for some cheap rural land near Denver or New York where I have creative interests. Currently I'm living in a crummy apartment to conserve my moderate investment money until I see the right land deal. That may be my best chance to establish a working base for my arts and creative projects. Then I will need plenty of time for prototyping, testing and documenting my growers. Then I plan to invest out of pocket for a patent attorney and strive to achieve comprehensive patent coverage. Once I have patent pending status, I plan to begin publicizing my sprouting technology to prospective manufacturers, beginning with those few companies that already sell industrial sprouting equipment. There is always a serious risk that someone will infinge or work around my patents. But my sprouter design is extremely unusual. And I think that honest sprouting equipment suppliers will immediately recognize the advantage of my process and jump on it (my leap of faith). If obtaining equitable licensing agreements fails, then I may choose the path of manufacturing the device myself out of pocket through direct industrial fabricators and molders. The device itself is almost as simple as a Bic pen or a light bulb. It's not complicated. But it lends itself to flexible modification through specific optional attachments. I dare not say more. It has some seriously unprecedented and exciting features. It does more than all commercial sprouters in existence and will inherently cost far less. Of course none of this will matter until it is patent-protected and then proven by video documentation when marketed.
If all else fails in my creative path, I have the belated option of going into commercial sprout production directly. I belive that gourmet sprouting is one of the best ways to mint money. Any time you can excel at something, there's a door you can open wide. Jeno Palucci of Chung King foods earned much of his early growth from canning bean sprouts. He was a sprouting pioneer in the US. It can be also be lucrative with fresh green sprouts if you do it right. I have friends who are interested in sprouting for income. And it does not necessarily take much money to get started. There are legal ways to overcome obstacles in entrepeneurial launches of this kind.
GrowSprouts.com is for Everybody
Essentially, I am willing to link just about everyone in the sprouting industry if they have a reasonably decent website with a domain name. I will link the smallest and largest growers and a limited selection of suppliers of many kinds. I will also link many scientific topics found on Wikipedia if they seem of any use to sprout people. And despite my belief in the superiority of my sprouter-to-come, I will be objectively linking makers of all kinds of sprouting devices, just because all sprout growers need one place where they can find this stuff. Likewise, I know companies that produce horrible sprouts and some that produce pretty good ones. But I have no intention of publishing criticism of anyone in specific. The goal of Grow Sprouts is simply to network the industry as well as the home grower. Positive for positive.
If all goes well with the invention, then I have already made plans for excellent trademarks and have registered a (secret) domain name to launch a seperate website specifically to promote the sprouter in the future. I intend to maintain Grow Sprouts for the obective benefit of all, regardless of how things work out with the invention and its marketing.
I'm not about the money. To a creative person, money is a tool that can be used to achieve a goal, not a goal in itself. I love great sprouts with a passion. And I feel an obligation to rehabilitate sprouts and inspire people to eat and grow them because I know just how good they can be. The sprout industry never did realize one percent of its true potential. Yes, there are many wonderful commercial sprouters out there selling primo quality sprouts. But most commercial sprouters are selling lackluster sprouts and still making money. And likewise, most of the commercial and home sprouting devices are crap. When I was growing sprouts in Boulder in the 1970s, I often gave free samples to sprout "haters". I can't remember finding a sprout-hating soul who didn't change their mind when tasting my sprouts.
Get Into Sprouting
Sprouting is an excellent way to make money. But who cares for money when you can have great sprouts to eat? All kidding aside, producing gourmet sprouts is truly a recipe for wealth-building. There is a huge "sleeping" demand for better sprouts because people are apathetic about the poor sprout quality that much of the sprouting industry has been producing. Most consumers are not even aware that they might like sprouts. But their hunger for sprouts will awaken with a devouring ferocity when they taste sprouts that are grown right. Just about anyone can set up a home grow or legit small commercial operation at a relatively low cost. Even if you're not industrially inclined, you can make a lot of great food-friends by serving quality green sprouts. Sprouts are a great way to stretch your food dollar in case you aren't rich.
GrowSprouts.com aspires to be a free resource. It's here to inform and inspire. I expect that it will become a better website as time avails over the coming seasons and years.
- P. Sprout