The production of fresh-cut vegetables in greenhouses in summer usually encounters many difficulties during the sprouting phase, due to excessive light and high temperatures. In order to face this problem, the company Retilplast has launched a new product, the white net cover Refresh with a cooling capacity higher than 20%, already used in some areas of region Campania.
"After the successful results of the first net covers installed last summer in the Plain of the Sele (Eboli) on the cultivations of lamb's lettuce, and thanks to the positive feedback of farmers, we have been receiving in recent weeks many orders from different areas of Italy," said Walter Ruggia, head of technological innovation of the aforementioned company. "In peak summer season, we can obtain light and temperatures that are similar to those of spring, which makes it ideal for the photosynthesis of fresh-cut vegetables, and for delicate and short-cycle crops, such as lamb's lettuce, but also for other vegetables, such as tomatoes, eggplants and peppers.
Lamb’s lettuce in the sprouting phase - Photo taken on 8 August 2020
"The net is placed over the thermoplastic film in early May, and then removed in September, thus not using lime, which often damages the cover and does not provide much light in the early fall. Our solution allows to contain the temperature, by reducing the exposure of short infrared rays (750 nm), and by reducing the light intensity without altering the solar spectrum (400-700 nm), though having an excellent diffused light and an excellent UVA and UVB (280-390nm)".
The white net cover Refresh is made with a monofilament mesh and white raffia high-density polyethylene (PE-HD), with the application of additive manufacturing. "It is a strong mesh weave with no cross nor longitudinal elongation, with special, robust lateral reinforcements."