The president of the Andalusian Parliament, Marta Bosquet, has visited the facilities of Tecnova accompanied by the President of the center, Angel Barranco, its Director General, Mari Carmen Galera, and members of the board of directors. During the visit, she learned about the main R & D lines run by the center together with companies of the agroindustrial sector, as well as about its main projects and services.
At the start of the visit, she held a meeting with the members of the Board of Directors and with former president Emilio Martínez. There she was told about the history of Tecnova and was given data about the companies with which it works, as well as about its customers, projects, countries and business volume. The President has shown great interest in the work that is being done and congratulated them.
Technological Center Tecnova was created on January 9, 2001 thanks to the interest of companies in the sector and with the support of the Andalusian administration.
Tecnova is a leading Technological Center at an international level. It has all the necessary technology to provide value from the moment fruits and vegetables are produced to their post-harvest and processing.
It promotes innovation and technological development based on the knowledge acquired nationally and internationally, providing value and competitiveness to companies in the agro-industrial sector. Its end goal is to be a leading provider of technological knowledge, with international projection in the technologies that are applied in the sector to provide value and improve the quality of life.
In 2007, it was classified as a Technological Center for the Auxiliary Industry of Agriculture, and in 2015 it was classified as a National Technological Center.
The Technological Center Tecnova aims to stand out pursuing values like professionalism, commitment, proactivity, flexibility, confidentiality, rigor, experience, and the ability to provide year-round advice. But the real value that makes everything else possible is the passion that workers put in all the work they do and the closeness to the clients with whom they work.
It has over 15,000 m2 of infrastructures. Of these, 12,000 m2 are devoted to new developments and trials. It has 26 greenhouse structures of different types, training areas, crop handling areas, an exhibition area, an agricultural waste management area and fertigation equipment. In the main building, located in PITA, it has more than 3,500m2, with portable and fixed cultivation chambers, a pilot plant dedicated to the fresh cut range, and another part dedicated to agro-food robotics, microbiology and molecular biology laboratories, food and plastic analyses, gastronomic innovation, sensory analyses, offices and technology transfer rooms.
The strategic lines and services offered are:
Plant production and environmental line.- Within this line of work, Tecnova offers services dedicated to biological control, new crops, varietal trials, in vitro culture, renewable energy, waste, water and life cycle analyses.
Greenhouses and agromotics technology line.- Focused on technology for greenhouses and agromotics, Tecnova is dedicated to providing design services for structures, irrigation and fertirrigation, climate control, sensoristics, robotics, artificial vision and automation and processing.
Biotechnology and health line.- The services developed here involve microbiology, microbial conservation, biofertilizers, classification of organisms, proteins and enzymes and bioprocesses and biocatalysis.
Post-harvest technology line.- New products and formats (fresh cut and ready to eat), improvements in shelf life and quality, modified atmosphere packaging, gastronomic innovation and sensorial analysis.
Tecnova in figures
In 2018, Tecnova carried out more than 45 trials in the experimental center together with different types of companies. There were varietal trials, nutritional tests and others on plant health, plastic films, precision agriculture, climate control, robotics, renewable energy and other projects.
The center offers services to more than 290 clients; it has 105 associated companies and it's present in 25 countries. In 2018, it carried out 48 R & D projects with companies and 20 of its own were also put into motion. A large part of them are European projects. It also provided 276 technological services. To do this, it has a workforce of 38 workers, 69% of whom are women, university graduates and female doctors.
The main source of income is the projects and services provided to companies, accounting for 75% of the revenue. The rest corresponds to R & D projects, which are funded in competitive calls, mostly European (12%), national (9%) and regional (4%).
Tecnova is the only Andalusian agro-food technology center registered as a national technological center by the Ministry, and has positioned itself as the main Andalusian agro-food technological center, namely because of its turnover, customers, infrastructure, jobs and international reputation. In its 18 years of existence, it has been able to launch projects and services of great interest to companies in the sector, which has allowed it to have a long-term sustainable business line without relying on public subsidies.
The main income generated is private and comes mostly from services and projects to companies (70%), while public revenues come from subsidies received competitively, especially from European and national projects.
Today we are facing a scenario in which there is a population growth worldwide, while the availability of natural resources, like soil and water, decrease. Based on these factors, there is a need to develop a high productivity agriculture for temperate and hot climates, and there are greenhouses practically all over the world.
There is a global demand for knowledge and technology for the development of highly productive agricultural systems in temperate and hot climates. This is presented as a market opportunity from which Tecnova could take advantage, possibly bringing Almeria's agricultural model to other countries.
The industry and auxiliary services have enormous potential and could become a new engine for economic and social development, but for this to become a reality, an effort needs to be made by every actor involved, including businesses, knowledge agents, financial entities, administrations and the media.
Tecnova is the center that brings together and represents agrobusiness companies at Andalusian level, making them more valuable through innovation and helping them find a place in the international market.