Glasshouse horticulture in Finland is becoming increasingly environmentally friendly. Growers are now switching to more sustainable energy sources. This is according to research done by the Finnish Institute for Natural Resources (Luke). The study was commissioned by a Handelsträdgårdsförbundet branch organization and the trade union, Österbottens Svenska Producentförbund.
Vegetable farmers have succeeded in reducing their carbon footprint by an average of 56% in 15 years. For tomatoes, this is as much as 61% per kg, for cucumbers, it is 45%, and for lettuce, 18%. New technologies and sustainable heating sources are being used more and more in the glasshouse horticultural sector. For example, the use of fuel oil has been cut by 85% since 2007.
According to the research, the most environmentally friendly Finnish growers can now compete with fellow Southern European companies in terms of their environmental footprint. Finnish farmers do use more power to generate heat. However, they need less water. The Finns also need a smaller area for the same size harvest as, for instance, growers in Spain.