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Our History

History of Gowan Company

In 1958, armed with an entomology degree from UC Davis, Jon Jessen found a job in Yuma, AZ, 500 miles south of his home in Dos Palos, CA. It was there that he met and married his wife Liney, a school teacher who was the youngest daughter of a farmer who, with his father, cleared their farm around 1915. Liney taught school, made their home, and raised their four children while helping Jon as he tirelessly worked to establish a new business scouting cotton, alfalfa, grass seed and vegetable crops for pests. He called his new business Growers Scientific Services. Still headquartered in Yuma, AZ, Jon’s business became Gowan Company and has grown into a global crop protection company with over 20 entities in 10 countries, selling critical crop protection solutions to growers across the world.

Below are just a few milestones that have led Gowan to the unique company it is today:


  • 1964 Growers Scientific Services started (field scouting service for insects)
  • 1965 Dune Companies of Yuma and Imperial Valley started (retail)
  • 1974 Gowan Company formed
  • 1976 Gowan Milling formed in Yuma
  • 1986 Juli Jessen, Jon’s daughter, goes to work for Gowan Company
  • 1991 First sales of Imidan ; first gowan active ingredient sold to national distributors
  • 1993 Gowan de Mexico organized
  • 1996  Desert Depot started ; warehousing for pesticides – free trade zone
  • 1997 Gowan Seed began selling seeds in Salinas Valley
  • 1997 Gowan Internacional Comercio e Servicos Limitada incorporated (International sales)
  • 1999 Mark Jessen, Jon’s son, becomes Gowan’s first Europe-based employee
  • 2000 Dune company of Salinas started
  • 2000 Bard Date started (production of Medjool Dates)
  • 2004 – Juli Jessen named CEO of Gowan Company
  • 2004 Canyon partnership created with Nissan Chemical
  • 2004 – Exigent organized (separate company organized for regulatory activities)
  • 2004 Gowan Agro Canada formed
  • 2005 Gowan Espanola Fitosanitarios established
  • 2005 Gowan Italia established
  • 2007 Gowan USA established commercial office in Kansas City, KS
  • 2010 Dune Company of Mexicali opens
  • 2010 Gowan France formed
  • 2011 AgroTechnology acquired
  • 2011 Ecoflora joint venture
  • 2011 Gowan India formed
  • 2013 Italy-based Isagro partnership agreement
  • 2016 GCIS becomes Gowan Crop Protection Limited out of UK
  • 2016 Gowan Belgium formed