It's official, the Agadir Horticultural Complex (CHA) has been opened under the presidency of His Excellency Mr. Mohammed Sadiki, Minister of Agriculture, Maritime Fishing, Rural Development, Water and Forestry of Morocco and Jeroen Roodenburg, the Dutch Ambassador of Morocco at the 10th of December 2022. This 1ha Demonstration Centre is an initiative of the leading knowledge-sharing university in Morocco, Institute Agronomique et Vétérinaire Hassan II (IAV). This university is focused on reshaping the future of Moroccan horticulture by educating future growers.
Education of the future growers is essential. Currently, Moroccan horticulture covers huge hectares of low-tech and mid-tech cultivation in, amongst others, Canarian greenhouses. In this important export country for vegetables and fruits, yield waste can be as high as 40% of the entire production. In addition, there are challenges around efficient water management and food safety. This is what Professor Farid Lekjaa (director of the CHA) strives to change in cooperation with both the Moroccan and Dutch governments. Together, they decided to build the first high-tech glass greenhouse for Morocco, in which Dutch greenhouse builders cooperated with local constructors.
To celebrate this success, this greenhouse was grandly opened on the 10th of December in Agadir. At this opening ceremony program, Mr. Martin Helmich (CCO of Hoogendoorn Growth Management) had the exclusive honor of giving a presentation about the vision of Hoogendoorn for the future of Moroccan horticulture. Mr. Helmich emphasized the importance of efficient climate- and water management for the region. Inspiring the region to use less natural resources and to grow their crops in the most efficient manner. This is achievable by using the IIVO process computer as the beating heart of their growing environment and putting the Plant Empowerment Principles into practice.
Of course, this process computer cannot be a one-to-one copy of the Dutch product because of the different environmental circumstances and the technology and knowledge level of the country. Therefore, Hoogendoorn's team signed an MoU agreement with the CHA under the presidency of His Excellency Mr. Mohammed Sadiki. Herewith, Hoogendoorn agreed to adapt its product's software to the needs of the region. This is done in cooperation with the students of the CHA, who will use the installed IIVO process computer, the sensors, and the LetsGrow.com data platform in the CHA on a daily basis. The intelligent algorithms of the IIVO will then be tailored to this research project and will be made available to all growers in Morocco. Together, Hoogendoorn and CHA are transforming the future of Horticulture in Morocco.
Within the spirit of standing strong together as the Dutch horticultural sector, Hoogendoorn is also proud that the following other Dutch companies and universities are contributing to the development of the CHA: Koppert, LetsGrow.com, Horti-XS, Zyztemz, Harvest House, GreenTech Amsterdam, Impact Cluster (consisting among others of Leiden University, TU Delft & Erasmus University) and Wageningen University and Research.
The official program concluded by watching the Moroccan team's World Cup soccer match in unison. At which a new starting point for the future was also realized. Fortunately, the team won the match and is now in the semi-finals.