SOURCE: Itronics Inc.

June 18, 2009 05:00 ET

Itronics Describes Strong Outlook for Its GOLD'n GRO Liquid Fertilizers

Growth Potential Driven by Environmentally Green Clean Technology

RENO, NV--(Marketwire - June 18, 2009) - Itronics Inc. (PINKSHEETS: ITRO) (FRANKFURT: ITG) (BERLIN: ITG) said today that total Company sales for the first half of 2009 are expected to increase about 20 percent.

"The demand for the GOLD'n GRO fertilizers continues to increase, but limitations on funds available to purchase ingredients for manufacturing our fertilizers is restricting first half GOLD'n GRO sales growth to about 15 percent," said Dr. John Whitney, Itronics President. He said that while the national economy is struggling, Itronics Metallurgical, the Company's wholly owned subsidiary, is benefiting from strong demand for silver and increased silver prices.

Dr. Whitney, in answering recent investment inquiries, said:

"The majority of fertilizer sales are being made through the Company's distributor to specialty crop growers in California. In the second quarter 2008 the parent company of our distributor acquired a major competitor, integrating the acquired company and its retail outlets into its existing retail distribution system and increasing the number of its nationwide retail outlets from more than 500 to about 800. Itronics' distributor is now one of the largest U.S. agriculture retail companies.

As a result of the merger, our distributor added 21 retail branches in Arizona, California and Hawaii for a total of 56 retail outlets in these states, a 55 percent increase from 2008. The merger and the resulting increase in distributor sales force and geographic coverage created an opportunity for strong growth in GOLD'n GRO orders this spring.

For the past 3 to 4 years several of the California based distributor retail branches have been working with their large California based corporate growers to introduce one or more of the GOLD'n GRO fertilizers. This year several of those corporate growers placed one or more truck load orders for the first time. Included in these are two of the largest farming companies in California. Order placement with our distributor is a vote of confidence for the cost effective benefits of using the GOLD'n GRO fertilizers. Ongoing expanding use by these large operations is expected to significantly increase the demand for our fertilizers in California in future years.

Most of the fertilizer sales are for specialty crop production in California which is strongly seasonal with a spring season that usually starts in the second half of March and ends in the first half of July. Peak months are April and May. Typically there is also a fall season which starts in late September and continues through mid December. In a normal year, about 70 percent of GOLD'n GRO sales are generated in the first half of the year. The Company is working to diversify sales to reduce the seasonal concentration.

A very sharp seasonal spike in fertilizer orders in the spring creates an equally sharp increase in the need for cash to buy fertilizer ingredients to make the fertilizers. This year, because of the collapse in the U.S. financial markets, the Company was unable to obtain financing needed to fill the seasonal surge in orders. As a result, almost all of the Company's cash receipts are being focused on purchasing fertilizer ingredients to fill the orders. This created a new operating concept, "financing capacity," for Itronics Metallurgical, versus normal operating limitations of "manufacturing capacity." By agreement with our distributor, supply is being managed to provide available fertilizers to retail outlets that already have a GOLD'n GRO customer base. New sales development is currently on hold. By closely coordinating with our distributor we have been able to keep most of the retail outlets supplied with critically needed fertilizers. Financing capacity is limiting the Company's output to about two-thirds of single shift manufacturing capacity.

Itronics Metallurgical has become an important western U.S. manufacturer of "Chelated Nutrient Metal" micro-nutrient fertilizers. It now offers 7 micro-nutrient fertilizers, but sales are currently dominated by four of these which are listed in descending order of importance: (1) GOLD'n GRO 9-0-1+7% Zn, (2) GOLD'n GRO 9-0-2+3% Zn multi-micro mix, (3) GOLD'n GRO 10-0-0+4% Fe, and (4) GOLD'n GRO 10-0-1+3% Mn. This year, manufacturing has been limited mainly to production of these four fertilizers. The orders are being filled and the order back log is being reduced. Most of the manufacturing is still focused on filling orders for the GOLD'n GRO 9-0-1+7% Zn which is the most popular GOLD'n GRO micro-nutrient fertilizer.

Large scale applications of GOLD'n GRO 8-8-8+4% S fertilizer in drip systems (fertigation) on crops in coastal and central valley areas in California in 2008 demonstrated that this fertilizer can be used safely in fertigation applications in locations that have hard water. This is not normally possible using conventional phosphate-bearing fertilizers. The GOLD'n GRO 8-8-8+4% S is manufactured in bulk under license by our distributor at a location in central California, which improves availability and reduces shipping cost for bulk deliveries to the central valley and coastal retail branches.

The Company, working with its distributor, has completed development of a new chelated micronutrient fertilizer, "GOLD'n GRO 9-0-0 Iron Man Z." This fertilizer, which was developed in response to customer requests, fills a nutrient gap, and is targeted for use in the turf and ornamental market, and for use on vegetables, trees and vines. Registration has been applied for in California, but has not yet been received. With the addition of this chelated micronutrient, the Company now offers seven chelated micronutrient fertilizers, and six chelated multinutrient blends, for a total of 13 GOLD'n GRO specialty fertilizers. The GOLD'n GRO Guardian Deer Repellent is a biopesticide and so the Company is now also offering one biopesticide for a total of 14 products. National recognition of the GOLD'n GRO Brand is now also being achieved.

Introduction of the GOLD'n GRO Guardian Deer Repellent fertilizer is expected to produce summer and fall sales which would partially mitigate the seasonality issue. Sales development for this product has been on hold due to financing capacity limits, but plans are being implemented to start sales as soon as the peak fertilizer season is over. The GOLD'n GRO Guardian is now registered in eleven states, including New York, and registration was recently applied for in Virginia.

The Company has also been implementing a sales program for the chemical injectors (Chemilizers) that are used for injecting fertilizer (fertigating) into drip and sprinkler irrigation systems in green house nursery operations and for up-scale homes. Locations that install the chemical injectors are set up to use one or two of the GOLD'n GRO fertilizers. GOLD'n GRO 8-8-8+4% S is typically used by the green house nursery operations. GOLD'n GRO 15-1-8+4% S and GOLD'n GRO 20-1-7+3% S are being used for fertigation of lawn and shrubs by sprinkler systems, and GOLD'n GRO 6-3-9+4% S is being used for drip irrigation of flower beds, roses, and garden vegetables.

The Company is working with the largest fertilizer distributor in Utah and now has more than a dozen green house nursery and lawn fertigation installations in Utah. In 2008 the Company began working with a landscape maintenance company in northern Nevada which now has almost a dozen installations. This project to sell fertilizer injectors in the nursery and landscape maintenance markets, while still small, has been under development for several years and is now starting to make a contribution to sales growth. These market segments are also expected to mitigate the seasonality by spreading fertilizer demand over longer growing seasons.

Demand growth for the GOLD'n GRO fertilizers is now being driven by excellent field results obtained with their use. In 2008 the Company's agronomy staff finished a peer reviewed research summary of how GOLD'n GRO fertilizers should be able to increase the availability of phosphorous and nutrient metals applied as fertilizers to the soil for growing crops. The research summary suggests that the unique chemistry of the GOLD'n GRO fertilizers is beneficial when applied to the soil by improving the availability of phosphate and the nutrient metals including iron, zinc, manganese, calcium, and magnesium. A related benefit is that fertilizer residuals, to the extent they occur, are used as a nutrient source by soil microbes providing virtually complete use of the fertilizers. This is the other "Green" aspect of the GOLD'n GRO fertilizer technology.

One of the emerging national fertilizer needs is to be able to apply manganese fertilizer in glyphosate (Round Up, a weed spray) spray mixes on "Round Up Ready" corn and soybeans (these plants have been genetically altered so that they are not damaged by the weed spray). Initial tests with GOLD'n GRO 10-0-1+3% Mn in the fall of 2007 produced very satisfactory results on "Round Up Ready" corn. In 2008 Itronics Metallurgical worked with one of its fertilizer ingredient suppliers who put out trials on "Round Up Ready" soybeans in several states. The GOLD'n GRO 10-0-1+3% Mn was found to be compatible with the glyphosate spray mixes and crop response was acceptable. The supplier has an extensive nationwide liquid fertilizer distribution system and is fully capable of introducing the GOLD'n GRO fertilizer in relevent markets in the midwest and southern United States where both corn and soybeans are major crops. This market is large, but would be strongly seasonal, so when Itronics Metallurgical is able to support the expansion with adequate funding and manufacturing capacity, market development can be initiated.

The GOLD'n GRO nutrient technology is providing economic and environmental benefits that are driving expanding demand. Use in fertigation reduces application costs and quantities required. Improved availability to the plant roots in the soil of phosphorous and nutrient metals after several years of use is now reducing the amount of fertilizer needed to provide satisfactory plant nutrition. This produces both economic and environmental benefits and increases customer loyalty.

Itronics, through its subsidiary Itronics Metallurgical, is the inventor and operator of award winning recycling technology that converts spent photographic liquids into pure silver and GOLD'n GRO fertilizers. Commercialization of this technology has created a 'Green Consumer Option' for photo and x-ray processors and 'Green fertilizers' for horticulture and agriculture. The fertilizers incorporate the ESSENCE OF GREEN because of how they are sourced and because of their excellent performance in the field."

About Itronics

Headquartered in Reno, Nevada, Itronics Inc. is a "Creative Clean Technology" company that produces GOLD'n GRO liquid fertilizers and pure silver bullion. Itronics, through its subsidiary, Itronics Metallurgical, Inc. is the only company with a fully permitted "Beneficial Use Photochemical, Silver, and Water Recycling" plant in the United States that converts spent photoliquids into pure silver and GOLD'n GRO liquid fertilizers. The Company is developing environmentally compatible mining technology, provides project planning and technical services to the gold mining industry, and operates the popular web site,, which provides a value-added WORLD VIEW of Gold Producer Stocks, Mineral Producer Stocks, Junior Gold Stocks, and Junior Mineral Stocks.

Itronics has received numerous domestic and international awards that recognize its ability to successfully create and implement new environmentally clean recycling and fertilizer technologies.

The Company's environmentally friendly GOLD'n GRO liquid fertilizers, which are extensively used in agriculture, can be used for lawns and houseplants, and are available, along with liquid fertilizer injectors, at the Company's "e-store" catalog at The popular Silver Nevada Miner bars are available at the Company's "e-store" catalog at


("Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: This press release contains or may contain forward-looking statements such as statements regarding the Company's growth and profitability, growth strategy, liquidity and access to public markets, operating expense reduction, and trends in the industry in which the Company operates. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release are also subject to other risks and uncertainties, including those more fully described in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements to reflect actual results, changes in risks, uncertainties or assumptions underlying or affecting such statements, or for prospective events that may have a retroactive effect.)

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