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Technique


Joel Bartlett on open source aquaponics

From tarantulas to turtles

Joel Bartlett isn't your run-of-the-mill aquaponics grower. An engineer by education, it was a tarantula he inherited from his aunt that set him off on a path towards developing aquaponics systems. Not only with fish, but with turtles. And he makes it a point to share all the knowledge he gathers in the.....

Russia: Robot grows cucumber and rocket

Local Novosibirsk enthusiasts have designed a robot for crossing rocket and cucumbers. The design was carried out by the Robot League company. The specialists from Novosibirsk have constructed a robotic greenhouse, named FarmDroid, which takes care of seedlings. The robot is capable of providing growing.....

Why do some fruits and vegetables conduct electricity?

Many of us know the science experiment involving the ever-popular pickle or potato battery. Now of course there are many types of electrical conductors. These include traditional electrical conductors, such as the copper and silver wires that are used to run electrical currents in homes and buildings, and.....

Kenya: Mobile platform receives $100,000 grant to grow farmers’ reach

Selina Wamucii, a mobile platform that shortens the agricultural supply chain in Kenya, reducing food wastage and boosting farmers’ incomes, is set to receive a $100,000 grant from global social impact programme Expo Live, run by organizers of the next World Expo, Expo 2020 Dubai.Some 60 per cent of food.....

Idai Nature committed to promoting a circular economy

Spain: Project to find uses for plant sub-waste

Idai Nature plans to carry out research for the development of new extracts derived from plant sub-waste; a valuable resource that is currently unused and is also a source of pollution.This research will be developed over the next two years through a project that the CDTI has awarded to Idai Nature, and the.....

China: South Holland province officials visit vegetable project CAU Futong

On Tuesday May 15, 2018, South Holland province and Hebei province officials visited the vegetable greenhouse complex CAU Futong Nanhe Industrial Cluster. The greenhouse complex is located in Xingtai city, in the northern China Hebei province.A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for future close collaboration.....

Horticultural Lighting Conference:

"LED in greenhouse horticulture not yet fully developed"

PHOTO REPORT LED lighting in the greenhouse horticulture has been in full development in recent years. Nowadays hardly a day passes without new insights, discoveries, and developments in lighting. After the first European edition of the Horticultural Lighting Conference in Eindhoven in 2017, it was high time to meet up.....

Monitoring growth, pests and diseases

The greenhouse nowadays is a specialized high tech production system for a wide variety of crops. Due to its large scale, it is impossible for a grower to monitor and control all plants individually. This, combined with other factors like an inhomogeneous climate, complex IPM in which the biological balance.....

Wireless system for precision irrigation in soil-less greenhouse basil cultivation

Dielectric moisture sensors are particularly suitable to manage irrigation in soil-less greenhouse production. Identifying the practical effects of substrate water content on crop performance is crucial for sensor-based irrigation.A) Main network control unit (MNCU); B) wireless SDI-12 Host Node (WSHN)."We.....

"Do it yourself with the Spare parts finder"

The need for technical knowledge is increasing in the horticultural sector. A greenhouse contains more and more machines and installations, but the number of people with a technical background is steadily decreasing. It’s a difficult situation. Or maybe not? With Royal Brinkman’s Spare parts finder, you can.....

Lessons from the Other Side:

Caribbean growers tour Japan in search of new technologies

More than twenty agricultural practitioners across eleven Caribbean countries have concluded a two-week study tour to Japan. The study tour, supported by the United Nations Development Programme’s Japan-Caribbean Climate Change Partnership (UNDP J-CCCP), held a primary focus of transferring knowledge and.....

LRC releases new report

US (NY): Comparing LED, HPS and MH luminaires

The Lighting Research Center (LRC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has published a new report on the energy and economic performance of LED horticultural luminaires. The LRC evaluated key factors such as power demand, life-cycle cost, luminaire intensity distribution, and luminaire shading. Of particular.....

Canadian, Israeli companies work together on MJ LED lighting

The Canada-Israel Industrial Research and Development Foundation (CIIRDF) announced eight new bilateral R&D projects valued at almost $12 million. MedReleaf and Israel’s FloraFotonica project to create new LED lighting systems with a special focus on cannabis growing facilities, was among those.....

C-LED and Biolchim partner to increase output capacity

LED technology is gaining more and more ground inside greenhouses. This is because it allows customisation of light spectra according to crop type and, at the same time, improves energy efficiency compared to traditional lighting systems.Latest-generation greenhouses are designed to aid natural growth 365.....

US (NV): Marapharm's Las Vegas sites get green light to flip the switch

On April 12th, 2018, NV Energy passed Marapharm's preliminary electrical inspection, one of the final steps towards receiving certification prior to turning on the power. All electrical services and cultivation lighting have been installed in both facilities in Las Vegas, Nevada.Marapharm’s Director of.....

CAN (ON): AntoXa granted license for anti-ricin antibody

AntoXa has obtained a license from Defence Research & Development Canada (DRDC), an Agency of the Canadian Department of National Defence, to develop and produce an anti-ricin monoclonal antibody for sale in markets worldwide.The licensing agreement follows work AntoXa and the J.C. Hall laboratory at the.....

Replacing PAR light with far-red light:

“Far-red light boosts tomato yield”

The use of artificial lighting in greenhouse horticulture has significantly increased in recent years, both in acreage and intensity, resulting in a strong rise in power consumption. One of the advantages of LED lighting compared to SON-T lighting is the higher energy-efficiency of the LEDs. Another.....

Pepper plant sops up personal care product antibiotic

It sometimes can be hard to find toothpastes, soaps and other toiletries without antibiotics. Their popularity has caused an increase in environmental levels of antimicrobial substances, such as triclocarban (TCC), which end up in the water and soil used to grow crops. Scientists report in the ACS’ Journal.....

HBV Coating:

"Not every paint is suited for every job"

A phone call from Tuscany from a grower who has a problem with paint peeling off of heating tubes getting in touch with a relation in Israel who had heard that HBV supplies good coatings and gives good advice. It's just an example of the global nature of Erwin van Lier’s job. "Painting and giving good advice.....

Better fertilization in bell peppers thanks to Mars mission

Next time you eat a tomato or sweet pepper, take a closer look, because there’s a good chance that its healthy appearance is thanks to one of former US President Barack Obama’s speeches and ESA research for sending people on long-duration space missions.Inspired by an Obama speech in 2010 on human missions.....

Plants 'hedge their bets' in germination

Researchers at the University of Birmingham have revealed how plants ‘hedge their bets’ by getting their seeds to germinate at different times. Their work identifies routes to reduce variability in agriculture and produce more consistent outcomes for farmers and food production, according to research.....

Spain: Discovery of a hormone key to the survival of plants

An international study led by researchers from the Higher Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) has identified a new plant hormone key to the survival of plants. It is the hormone dinor-OPDA, which allows non-vascular plants (bryophytes) to defend themselves from their external aggressors, such as pathogens.....

UK: Cambridge and four other universities form agritech partnership

Five leading universities, including the University of Cambridge, have formed a partnership to develop and commercialise agritech research, in order to improve sustainability, increase productivity and contribute to global food security.The Ceres Agritech Knowledge Exchange Partnership links the universities.....

Japan: Fujitsu and Kyushu University to research AI in agriculture

Kyushu University and Fujitsu Limited will conduct joint research in the field of agriculture, for two years beginning April 2018, with the goal of increasing the stability and sophistication of agricultural production using artificial intelligence.In this joint research, Fujitsu and Kyushu University will.....
Startups agriculture automation can now apply for a $250,000 minimum investment

Applications now open for The Radicle Automation Competition

Western Growers and Radicle Growth have partnered to create The Radicle Automation Challenge, a competition where AgTech automation entrepreneurs are eligible to compete for a minimum of $250,000 in investment capital and exclusive access to farm acreage to pilot their technologies. Four finalists will be.....

Animation: solution for future freshwater shortage

Due to climate change, rising sea levels, soil subsidence and salinization of the groundwater, fresh water is becoming ever scarcer. At the same time, there are more often periods with a lot of precipitation. All that rainwater could provide a solution for the freshwater shortage. Exactly how that should.....

US: Water quality interpreter tool available

The University of Connecticut and University of Florida just launched the WaterQual tool. This tool interprets the quality of a water source for use in irrigation of plants in greenhouses and nurseries.The tool is available in English and Spanish.For more information:cleanwater3.org/wqi.asp

US (IN): Data center to include tech incubator, Purdue greenhouse

Indianapolis attorney Tom Dakich and New York City-based data center mogul Peter Feldman plan to invest at least $40 million in the proposed Indiana NAP data center at the site of the former coal-fired State Line Generating Plant on the border of Hammond and Chicago. The project is estimated to create 250.....

Partnership brings smart sensing tech to UK horticulture

Fargro, a wholesaler and supplier of commercial horticultural products, announced a partnership with Dutch company 30MHz B.V. to offer modular, scalable and user-friendly smart sensing products to the UK horticulture sector for the first time.The innovative 30MHz technology comprises a network of wireless.....

Focus on nutritional elements: sulfate

In addition to the other nutritional elements, a plant also needs sulfate (SO42-) in order to grow properly. Sulfate in the plant is mainly found in the proteins of the leaf green and in the cell fluid.What is the function of sulfate?Sulfate (SO42-) is the oxidized form of sulfur and is absorbed by the plant.....

Spisa Smaker AB

"Quality improvement and electricity savings thanks to LED"

To meet market demands for high quality produce and red pigmented lettuce, Swedish-based Spisa Smaker AB invested in a LED grow light system. Not only have they seen great results in quality improvement, they have also experienced a 48% savings in electricity."We had to focus on increasing the quality of.....

US (AZ): Using space-age technology for down-to-earth agriculture

Astronauts and polar explorers can grow fresh foods in space and Antarctica. Now, it’s time for rural communities to get into the greenhouse game.Similar to what Matt Damon portrayed in the movie The Martian, astronauts can successfully grow enough food to sustain themselves in orbit or on another planet......

Qatar: Research complex to boost agriculture sector

The Ministry of Municipality and Environment of Qatar has completed the design of a project to build a huge complex for agricultural research and guidance at Al Mazrouha, Umm Salal which will develop agricultural techniques helpful in increasing the country’s local production to meet self-sufficiency.....

Adding far-red light compensates for less light

Since the start of this lighting season, the Vereijken nurseries in the Netherlands have been conducting lighting tests as part of the 'Guidance and Monitoring of Energy Innovations in Practice' project by Kas als Energiebron (Greenhouse as Energy Source). Previous tests showed that the addition of far-red.....

US: Regulatory barriers to developing innovative agricultural biotechnology

During a two-day event in Washington, D.C., on March 22-23, the Council for Agriculture Science and Technology released a CAST Issue Paper titled Regulatory Barriers to the Development of Innovative Agricultural Biotechnology by Small Businesses and Universities. The celebration of National Ag Week (March.....

New Zealand: How UV light could improve crops

Palmerston North-based company BioLumic, which has developed a world first system of using ultraviolet (UV) light on crops, will invest $7 million to grow the business.Chief executive Warren Bebb​ said the company would be able to employ more people as a result of the funds from a group of American and.....

US (NY): GLASE hosts horticultural lighting meeting

Greenhouse Lighting and Systems Engineering (GLASE) consortium brought together many of the major horticultural lighting companies in the United States on March 20, 2018. The purpose of the web meeting was to discuss how GLASE can accelerate the adoption of energy-efficient lighting technologies to expand.....

Illumitex builds digital horticulture network community

Illumitex and Foodshed.io will partner to bring a robust intelligence platform to market expanding access to local markets and improve grower sales efficiencies. This partnership will give growers several advantages by integrating precise forecasts of crop production and grow cycles, with a seamless.....

US (NY): Cornell student to develop weed-free growth media

Seven New York state businesses have been awarded funding to participate in the Cornell Center for Materials Research JumpStart Program, through which they will collaborate with Cornell faculty members to develop and improve their products.The program is supported by Empire State Development’s Division of.....

Tupperware and Techshot develop plant growth chamber for NASA

An improved system for growing plants in space, developed for NASA by Tupperware Brands and Techshot is expected to launch to the International Space Station (ISS) April 2 aboard a commercial SpaceX Dragon cargo capsule from Florida's Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.Mizuna growing inside plant growth.....

Cultilene collaborates with 30MHz

Online platform offers real-time and detailed insight into root environment

Cultilene and 30MHz join forces to give growers more insight into the root environment of the plant. With the help of real-time data, Cultilene offers growers an extra tool to optimize their irrigation and nutrient management and in this way lift the production and quality to a higher level. Both companies.....
Morgan Pattison, Solid State Lighting Services:

"Advancements in LED will have major impact on horticulture"

With a PhD in materials science from the University of California-Santa Barbara, Morgan Pattison has long believed that light emitting diodes (LEDs) were going to eventually dominate the illumination market. His thesis research advisor was Dr. Shuji Nakamura who invented the blue LED. Nakamura received the.....

Peru: Tecnova helps boost greenhouse agriculture

The actions contemplated in the AGRISECH project - the implementation of a new system of protected cultivation for the optimization of water and agricultural inputs in Sechura - started to be carried out in December 2017. The project will be led by Tecnova and will be developed in collaboration with the.....

TEM-010 extracts tomato seed

Seed Processing Holland added a new machine to their assortment. The TEM-010 is designed to extract seeds from small tomato lots, and the built-in water nozzle system enables a quick cleaning cycle minimizing any residual formation between lots. After manual dosing into a hopper the tomatoes enter the first.....