70% of fresh water is consumed for agricultural purposes, including food production. As more people put ever increasing demands on limited resources, the cost and effort to build or even maintain access to water will increase.
“Grow more with less” is the main principle of precision growing. In precision growing and soilless cultivation it is possible to minimise water use. Interesting fact is that about 90% (8,500 ha) of the Dutch greenhouse horticulture consists of soilless cultivation . In these greenhouses collection and re-use of drain water is obligatory (Beerling et al., 2014). Precision growing changed the conventional way of cultivation radically.
Dutch growers with hydroponics technology with recirculation reduced their water use for crops by up to 90% compared to conventional soil based system, as we assessed by Wageningen University & Research in our whitepaper “Using less water when growing hydroponically”.
Careful management of water and nutrients combined with recycling the drain water in the greenhouses can strengthen growers’ business both in the short and long term because it contributes to:
Closed hydroponic systems help protect the environment by minimizing fertilizer emission and conserving surface water quality.
Growers can capture and recycle the drain water from the beginning of the cultivation cycle. Monitoring the Water Content and Electrical Conductivity in the substrate (with the GroSens sensors) allow growers to make informed decisions with respect to fine
At Grodan we are proud to serve the agricultural sector and contribute with our solutions to help manage water better and to help growers grow sustainably.