Inspiration from Japan
The result of their research and development was Seedball, a fertile sphere containing a mini-ecosystem.
The idea germinated after Ana read about work by Japanese agronomist and monk, Masanobu Fukuoka, who revived the ancient technique of seed propagation where compost, clay and seed are mixed into marble sized balls and scattered to grow crops more efficiently.
Ana and Emily loved this concept and could see its permacultural benefits over conventional approaches. Their innovation was to adapt the recipe to suit wildflower seed, adding chilli powder into the mix to further protect seed from ants and seedlings from slugs.
Message in a Seedball
By 2012, using homemade packaging containing their first seed ball prototypes, they began selling at fairs and festivals.
By the end of that year, Seedball had grown a large social media following, were stocked by their first shop and had made enough money to employ a design team to give the Seedball brand a makeover.
In 2013 Seedball launched officially. It is driven by social and environmental purpose, so all profits from sales are invested in social enterprise Project Maya. One aim is to help other scientists embed impact in their work.
Based on an ancient Japanese idea, Emily and Ana added a hot modern twist to their Seedballs: a pinch of chilli powder to deter garden predators naturally.
Now stocked by over 150 retailers in Britain and across mainland Europe, including Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Sweden, and Switzerland, Seedball’s sales also thrive online.
All Seedball profits fund the work of Project Maya establishing global reserves worldwide. Seedball ingredients are natural and peat-free. The reusable, highly recyclable tins are manufactured locally using renewable energy.