For growers and gardeners of all kinds, Smart Grow mats could be revolutionary. Tucked around the stems of plants, the cheap, natural mats keep weeds and pests away as they spur growth. There’s just one thing holding them back: They’re made from human hair. “No matter what you do,” says CEO Blair Blacker, some people just “won’t get over it.”
Blacker’s warehouse is stacked with roughly $400,000 worth of hair. It doesn’t smell great, but that’s “the odor of money, as far as we’re concerned,” he tells Marketplace. The Florida company had sales of $300,000 last year, and it’s looking for the capital to go national. If that happens, it could revolutionize the agriculture industry: One farmer says the product saves him $3,200 a year.