Kroptek and Surexport have started working in collaboration on a project to sustainably grow strawberries, with the ultimate goal to fast-forward the strawberry season by a full month with the best quality of fruit.
A mutually beneficial research project
This project is a mutually beneficial research agreement between the British and Spanish companies, with Kroptek providing its expertise on horticultural lighting to sustainably grow strawberries within Surexport’s new 1-hectare greenhouse in Huelva, in the south of Spain. "Thanks to their product development capabilities and agile manufacturing, Kroptek can deliver customized lighting solutions in a cost-effective manner. We will be able to provide continuous feedback and propose adjustments in order to optimize the project setup and start harvesting strawberries as early as the beginning of December," the Surexport team states.
Iván Pérez, Production Manager at Surexport, added: “We’re eager to meet the needs of our customers and at the same time go ahead of the environmental standards. Kroptek gives us technical and material support to help us meet our goals and we’re excited to be partnering with them.”
Testing the boundaries of sustainability
In addition to the energy-efficient LED lights, solar panels were also installed to power the operation with clean electricity. This packaged solution was provided by Kroptek, with the help of a local partner.
It was important for both parties to evaluate the use of solar energy during the darker seasons in order to develop a commercially viable and environmentally sustainable solution as the project scales up.
"With the ongoing and escalating energy crisis in many countries, we are actively developing solutions that reduce power consumption in agriculture and generate power using solar energy. Most recently, we won grants from Innovate UK along2/2 with academic and commercial partners to develop photovoltaic glasshouse panels with testing to start this winter," the Kroptek team concludes.