Sébastien Manelli uses GroSens to precisely manage the irrigation of his tomato crops. Fully convinced of the benefits of increasing the number of measurements to improve the precision of the tool even further, he told us all about how he combines the data collected from fixed sensors with that from a mobile one that passes through all his production areas each day.
For three generations, the Manelli family has been based in the commune of Saint Martin de Crau at the foot of the Alpilles Regional Natural Park and just to the north of a stony and windy plain that stretches between the Rhône delta, the Camargue and the Étang de Berre. This family of market gardeners were originally from Marseilles and lived in the Mazargues neighbourhood, the former green belt of the beautiful port city, but their property was requisitioned 1980. When they arrived in Saint Martin de Crau, they discovered untouched land and plenty of water. Once settled, they gradually specialised in the production of tomatoes in greenhouses. Today, Sébastien Manelli manages Scea Saint Paty. It’s a family company with his father still heavily involved and his sister just joined the team.
Today the company cultivates their tomatoes on an area of over 4 hectares in some of the latest greenhouses, their farm has been completely rebuilt over the last 10 years. The irrigation system is set up to independently manage 8 units each covering 5000 m2. Their production is entirely dedicated to cultivating tomatoes on a rockwool substrate, more specifically on 10 cm-thick Grotop Master slabs. Over time, their single-variety vine tomato crop has been replaced by a more diversified range of crops. In line with the trade policy of the Rougeline group which the company, due to their membership of the Primeur de la Crau growers’ cooperative, belongs to.