“The big soft fruit growers in Germany cultivate in glasshouses, others grow in tunnels or use only Non-woven Crop Covers to protect the plants from rain and against frost damage. The amount of tunnels has – overall – shown a big increase over the last three years, as growers are more focused on controlling the environment and increasing the yield.” Speaking is Stephan Kohn, manager of GLAESERgrow. The company is a supplier of growth foil as well as non-wovens and nets for the fruit and vegetable industry.
A greenhouse with strawberries, which are planted in a black Mulching foil.
Increasing sales of netting
The increase of tunnels, however, depends on the season. “Last season we had a very hot summer, which was not the best condition for growers to sell their products. And as we all know, you need money for investing. Legislation also plays a role. In several countries like Germany, Poland and Scandinavia, the using allowance of chemical crop protection is limited more and more. As a result, we see an increase in the sales of netting to protect against insects."
Strawberries, additionally covered with GLAESERgrow's Nonwoven Crop Cover to protect the plants from rain and frost.
Suitable for various climates
“Europe is our main market, but we supply worldwide”, says Stephan. “Different markets require different products, so we developed our polyethylene film in such a way that it can be adjusted in several ways so it can be used in all kinds of climates. First of all is the foil UV stable, then there is the anti-dew additive that keeps the foil free from drops that can act as a magnifying glass, resulting in sunburn. A thermic additive saves temperature and results in a more consistent temperature.
GLAESERgrow’s greenhouse film is available in several sizes and thicknesses. “The standard one is 150μm then we have 180μm and 200μm. Customers base their choice on the climate, in areas where storms often occur growers tend to choose the strongest. Others choose the standard version as they are used to buying a new foil every three years.”