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Long Island Compost brands sold to Scotts Miracle-Gro

Trucks arrive at the Long Island Compost location

Trucks arrive at the Long Island Compost location in Yaphank on June 30, 2010. Photo Credit: Newsday / Thomas A. Ferrara

Long Island Compost, a Westbury-based maker and marketer of compost and mulch, has sold its consumer packaging business to Scotts Miracle-Gro, officials said Wednesday.

The sale transfers ownership of Long Island Compost's sprawling consumer packaging site in Yaphank and its consumer brands, Great Gardens and Hamptons Estates, to Scotts, based in Marysville, Ohio. Scotts also has licensed the Long Island Compost brand.

Scotts will lease 25 of Long Island Compost's 62 acres in Yaphank and build another packaging line. Scotts, which bills itself as the world's largest marketer of branded consumer lawn and garden products, has competed with Long Island Compost on garden store shelves.

Charles Vigliotti, Long Island Compost president and CEO, who owns the company with his brother, Arnold, said 38 workers will become Scotts' employees in Yaphank.

"Scotts has been looking to do something with us for quite a while," Charles Vigliotti said. "We felt the time was right to open up that end of the pipeline."

Scotts Miracle-Gro confirmed the acquisition yesterday but declined to comment on it. Financial terms of the deal, which closed on Friday, weren't disclosed.

The Vigliottis will continue to operate Long Island Compost production and wholesale operations, and a newly created company, American Organic Energy, which plans to create renewable energy and compost using an anaerobic digester, which cuts odors, dust and noise.

Long Island Compost has had a history of complaints from neighbors and regulators over odor, air quality and occasional mulch fires.In 2013, the company reached an agreement with regulators and neighbors to cover bagging and tipping facilities, pave roads to reduce dust and build the anaerobic digester.

Vigliotti said the digester plan, which was expected to be completed last year, has been delayed by permits and other issues, but he said he hopes to break ground by summer.

Scotts in a statement said it was "committed to managing the environmental risks and reducing the environmental footprint of its growing media facilities and to work with our third-party manufacturers and distribution network to reduce their environmental impact."

Vigliotti's company will continue to produce compost, mulch and other products for wholesale distribution, and will become the local supplier for Scotts, which previously shipped to Long Island from production facilities in Connecticut and Virginia. Scotts will now supply Long Island from Long Island Compost made and packaged in Yaphank.

Long Island Compost sells 5.5 million units of compost, mulch and other soil products under the brands annually. Vigliotti said his ambition is to double the production at Yaphank with the addition of Scotts' branded products.

The sale "will allow us to greatly expand that [sales volume] in a manner that's sensitive to community impacts," he said.

Long Island Compost, which remains based in Westbury, will maintain two office buildings in Yaphank, along with ownership of the 62 acres.

"Arnold and I came into this business 38 years ago, and we ain't going nowhere," Charles Vigliotti said.

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