Announcements

Job offersmore »

Tweeting Growers

Top 5 - yesterday

Top 5 - last week

Top 5 - last month

Exchange ratesmore »




Light influences vitamins, nitrate level, shelf life:

Vitamin C content in arugula skyrockets with new growth recipe

Philips Lighting's GrowWise Research Center has produced a vitamin C-rich arugula with seven times higher vitamin C1 content than the published USDA value of 15 mg/100 gr. The vitamin C-rich arugula was grown in a trial in collaboration with the Dutch Wageningen University and Research, and Maastricht University, using a new growth recipe under Philips LED lighting in a vertical farming environment with no daylight.



The results of this trial prove that it is possible to add functional ingredients to a food like arugula in a natural way by simply growing it differently. Retailers and growers can apply specific Philips growth recipes using LED technologies to meet the growing demand for functional foods from health-conscious consumers. "Since vitamin C is one of the markers of shelf life, the higher vitamin C levels in the arugula at harvest may also help retailers extend the green’s shelf life. In addition to vitamin C, other healthy compounds are shown to be influenced by the growth recipe", said Philips in a news release.

“The results of this trial reveal that not only can we boost the yield of a crop, but we can also influence the taste and growth characteristics of a crop by changing the growth recipe. A Philips growth recipe provides parameters for growing a crop that include the light level, spectrum, intensity, required uniformity, position and time, as well as climate conditions like temperature, humidity, CO2 levels and nutrition,” said Udo van Slooten, Managing Director for Philips Lighting Horticulture LED Solutions. “This achievement confirms the tangible benefits that our research at Philips GrowWise Center is delivering for growers and retailers as they look to meet specific consumer needs like optimized smell, taste and flavor to differentiate themselves in their markets.”



Light influences nitrate level
The arugula grown under the LED lighting with the new Philips growth recipe showed a very low nitrate level while having a high yield. Lower nitrate levels also have higher sugar levels and a milder taste. The leaves grown under the LED lighting scored between five and eight on the Brix index, which correlates with a higher perception of sweetness in sensory tastes. The low nitrate levels achieved in this trial are considerably lower than those set by the European Union, which range from 7000 mg/kg to 6000 mg/kg). This low-nitrate arugula would help retailers in Poland, Russia and Finland, specifically, meet the growing demand for low-nitrate foods from consumers in these countries. By using another growth recipe, it is also possible to grow a high vitamin C arugula with a high nitrate content for consumers willing to use high rich nitrate content as a health benefit without affecting the production of other nutritious compounds.

The trial was carried out at the Philips GrowWise Center in Eindhoven, the largest vertical farming research facility of its kind, in cooperation with Wageningen University and Research for plant science and shelf life, and Maastricht University on Health Food innovation, both in the Netherlands. The arugula crop was tested in four different lighting situations with three different LED lighting combinations and one artificial light source that mimicked the sun and/or HPS lighting. The effects of high blue and high far red wavelengths were also studied to determine their impact on shelf life and nutrient content of the harvested greens.

For more information:
Philips Lighting
www.philips.com/horti

Publication date: 7/12/2017

 


 

Other news in this sector:

7/21/2017 US (FL): $3 million grant helps researchers look for new growing locations
7/21/2017 Photosynthetic responses of leafy veg to irradiance and CO2 concentration
7/21/2017 Production potential generates interest in Dutoli
7/21/2017 Cucumbers in space provide insights on root growth
7/20/2017 Spain: Hydroponic tomatoes as alternative to peppers in Murcia
7/20/2017 Fruit and fruiting disorders in summer squash and cucumbers
7/20/2017 Ph effects: The difference between soil grown and aquaponics
7/19/2017 Ag-tech startup gives farmers insight into soil health
7/19/2017 "When cultivating on water, we can't work with chemical products"
7/18/2017 US: SIFT and Montana State partner in strawberry trials
7/17/2017 Research investigates best growing conditions for Malling Centenary strawberries
7/14/2017 The impact of transplanting times, light exposure on hydroponic crop production
7/13/2017 Reduce your disposal fees with biodegradable twine
7/13/2017 Farmer Tyler shines his light
7/11/2017 Nutrient guidelines for hydroponic tomato production
7/10/2017 US (NH): Researchers extend growing season for strawberries
7/10/2017 US (TX): High tunnel value proven in High Plains vegetable production
7/10/2017 A closer look at mulch bell peppers
7/7/2017 Dutch MP harvests peppers grown without daylight
7/6/2017 "Motorleaf automates your farm in a swipe and a click"