We have known pathogens in the irrigation water are a serious issue for crops and their profitability for over a century. Over the past few years, the increase in temperatures and the fewer precipitations have worsened the problem.
There is substantial scientific proof that demonstrates that contaminated irrigation water is one of the primary causes of inoculation of diseases in open-field crops, nurseries, fresh-cut lettuce, and protected soilless crops.
With its powerful antioxidant action, ozone is an effective solution that leaves no residues.
Below is a list of advantages of using ozone for the irrigation of fresh-cut lettuce:
•Sterilization of the irrigation water, enabling safe use of sources of water that would usually possibly cause problems.
•Elimination of active principle and plant protection product residues in the irrigation water.
•Containment of root and neck rot and of other fungi; stimulation of the root and leaf apparatuses.
•Leaf texture and crunchiness were also maintained in late fall.
•Healing of wounds and swift growth upon harvesting.
•Fewer plant protection products: by eliminating diseases from the start, thus working by preventing them, our clients have saved an estimated 30% in plant protection products. One of our clients, who produces fresh-cut products for northern Italy, has estimated a saving of 50 euro cents per square meter (€5,000 per hectare).
•Ozone does not cause resistance, so it can be used without the risk of selecting resistant micro-organisms.
•Lower microbiological risk, therefore simpler washing and packaging processes, as the produce boasts a lower superficial microbial load.
Fresh-cut crops are getting closer to the biosafety concept also due to the need to comply with the Farm To Fork Strategy 2021-2027: Ecofarm's know-how and our solutions can lead companies safely in this direction.