Biodegradable cultivation tarpaulin on Swedish land

Horticulture uses large quantities of cultivation tarpaulin on fossil basis. In the past three years Wargön Innovation has been working on the development of biodegradable and environmentally friendly alternatives, based on hemp, viscose, cellulose, and wool. Susanne Eriksson, who led the project: “The results are hopeful. The biodegradable cultivation tarpaulin seems to stop weeds in most cases, and that is promising for the future. We cannot go on polluting the soil in this way.”

The conventional cultivation tarpaulin of polypropylene or polyester fibers is often left in the ground, which becomes polluted with microplastics. Collecting and destroying these micro fibers is incredibly labor intensive, and is no longer necessary when using biodegradable cultivation tarpaulin. Tomas Johansson, RISE, the Swedish research institute that conducted multiple tests for the research: “It is the main advantage of the degradable type. After harvest, you can just cover it up with soil.” Now the tests have been concluded, they are looking for a company that wants to further develop the prototype and put it into production. Eriksson: “We are convinced that there is a market for this cultivation tarpaulin, which is environmentally friendly and labor saving. It may be possible to add minerals or other substances to positively stimulate growth.”

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