Due to the weather it's hardly possible to work during the day. Temperatures will rise to 35 degrees in daytime. In the greenhouse, it'll be even warmer and since the cultivation hasn't started yet, there's no crop to cool it down a bit. That's why the heating pipes in the new greenhouses of Dutch tomato growers Agro Care and Van den Bosch will be spray-painted during the night. "We start at six in the evening and work all night," says Gilbert Geraerts. "It's the best way to do so." By me, he doesn't mean himself by the way - his colleague is going to do it. Just like last year, when they spray-painted the first phase of the Agro Care facilitation. Every day, just about 25 kilometers of heating pipe will be painted.
Tunisia isn't the only country where the company is active. Over the last few years, their work has become more and more international. "We sell paint worldwide, but also go abroad ourselves to apply it," Gilbert says. "Last year we went to Germany and Austria, but also Canada was on the list." The machine is sent out weeks ahead. For the Tunisian project, it has been several weeks as well. Because the company has more spraying robots, it's not a problem for the current working schedule.
Finished in days
So let's talk about money - isn't it a major investment to sent out the machine, the work men and the paint? According to Gilbert, it's not too bad. "It's a choice you make. When we take our robot there, the work will be finished in some days. If they work by hand, it might take them several weeks. Besides, it's hot so people will work slower, it'll cost you a lot of paint and the paint will drip down. You'll have to heat up to dry the paint and in the end it won't look better." It's clear: painting might look like an easy job - but that's not the reality. "Last year we made an offer to spray-paint a greenhouse, but the grower chose to just buy the paint instead. Now he regrets his decision. It took forever and the work is not as neat as we would've done it."
Since some years Gilberg doesn't use white paint, but uses paint with a touch of blue. It makes the greenhouse even more bright. "And it covers better. We started it and saw the results improve."
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