Why I started ITG
I have always loved gadgets. Even as a child I loved anything that was mechanically unique, that could do something better than anything else. I guess I came by that fascination naturally, my father when he was young invested in the first potato peeler. When I was able to buy my first company, was back in the “sick building syndrome” time, when Legionnaires’ disease had just been discovered. I bought into a company that was remediating commercial and industrial HVAC systems and removing pathogens like Candida albicans and streptococcus Aurelius and others, that might cause neurological or physical issues. Even though we didn’t market it I created the first vacuum cleaner with HEPA filtration by modifying our backpacks with wheels. We ended up doing the third Army headquarters, Hughes aircraft, Coca-Cola headquarters as well as others. Then I bought a company that was able to reduce the usage of natural gas in commercial operations, especially restaurants. This was a time when energy consumption was critical, somewhat as it is now. Fast-forward to 2018, when a friend of mine introduced me to the world of CBD as an effective alternative to other pain relievers . He said it was not only a great business opportunity but that it was truly a beneficial health product. I was very skeptical. Before I go into anything I usually research It pretty well. What I found really amazed me. Here was something that I thought had had very little research done in regards to the benefits of it, (which was totally untrue), and was really just another hyped up “snake oil”. What I found instead was a well researched, (especially outside the United States), plant-based oil which had some pretty impressive health benefits. After hearing enough impressive anecdotal testimonies, my family and I started using CBD. The results were impressive and we use it to this day. But CBD is only one of 140 identified parts of the hemp plant. I found that other parts which are called cannabinoids were equally beneficial. I found research that identified CBN another cannabinoid, as having excellent sedative effects without the side effects of prescription drugs. Other cannabinoids had equally impressive benefits. This is where I put on my entrepreneurial hat and researched how this CBD oil was produced. I found out that one of the most popular methods used butane. Another method used ethanol and still another one used CO2. These were solvents and green house gases that could be dangerous both in the production and to our health in the final product. There had to be a better way….. and there was.
The ITG journey began in August of 2019 when a friend of mine told me about a new technology that I should check out.. The next day, which is uncharacteristically quick for me, I jumped on a plane, flew out to the university that had developed it, saw the machine, met the inventor, spent about 6 hours with him, met the development license holder, came to a verbal agreement and flew back out the next day. That time frame was unique enough but what happened to me in the Atlanta airport was truly the reason we're where we are today.
As I was waiting for my plane, and writing down my due diligence list, I got a text from a friend of mine in England. He he had gone home because his mom had been very sick. I knew she had died just last week and so when I saw his text which said to call him I did so immediately, thinking it was something in regards to his mom. What he told me blew me away…….. He said the Lord had awakened him in the middle of the night and told him to give me the following word immediately. " What you're doing is good, keep doing it, and I will bless it." The timing, the fact that he was in England and had just lost his mom and felt that it was critical to reach out to me in the middle of the night, and the nature of the word in relation to what I was writing when I got the text, was strong evidence to me that the word was directly related to my trip and my plans to move forward with the development of this new technology. You see what I haven't told you is that the due-diligence list that I had just started, only had my number one thing to do on it. “#1 make sure the Lord is behind this”. As far as I am concerned that timing was no coincidence. It was something that I just couldn't ignore.
I brought in a friend of mine who is a internationally recognized process engineer and consultant and had him interview the inventor. After the interview my friend, who is usually very skeptical of new technologies,( that’s why I use him), gave me a green light to proceed with the commercialization effort. We began testing with hemp because the process had only been used on a very small scale with that biomass and the commercialization of that technology could be very valuable. A design engineer was hired to make modifications to the design to make it more efficient and to increase its capacity. The unique aspect of this new technology was that it used no solvents. It was a completely “green technology”.
So here we are, and we have a machine ready to go into operation. It’s not the machine I described above, as is often the case in the development of new technology. We have adapted a technology that has been proven in other industries and are now employing that technology. It will separate out the cannabinoids and it still employs a completely green technology. We have a company paying us to process hemp oil to the T free distillate I envisioned us producing a year earlier. Again it is a completely “green” technology. We have two more machines like this that we plan to manufacture over the next 6 months...and that's just the beginning... We have two proposed joint ventures with larger machines that will take the harvested plant and after sizing will create T free distillate employing the method I described in the beginning of this story. We also have a new technology that could be a disruptor across several industries which will come on stream in the next year and we have a planned joint venture with a company that has a new technology which will create and market high-value hemp based products at a low cost.
As far as the future goes, we also have plans to build a 1000 ton a day biofuel facility using a different biomass, but employing the same technology I discovered a year ago.....
I don’t know what you think, but to me, that is all evidence that the word I got in the Atlanta airport is beginning to play out...I am excited to see what comes next.
TS Roberts, Founder