‘After a good conversation, I know, almost exactly what a customer needs.’ As the face of CODEMA’s Water Management division, Danny van den Bosch helps customers to take their water and electrical engineering to the next level. CODEMA works with growers all over the world on optimal water management. The services and product range are geared to the needs and capacity of the customer.
In the coming years, CODEMA will mainly focus on food production. All innovations and knowledge that is gained in the flori- and herb cultivation come together in the food production market. This is urgently needed, because the increasing world population increases the demand for food, while raw materials such as water are becoming scarcer.
However, the sustainability matter has an influence. Transport and emissions must be limited as much as possible. Therefore, people would prefer to produce the food local for local. Is vertical farming the solution? Although, CODEMA is fully engaged in the realization of multi-layer cultivation systems, this is not yet a practical option for many areas. The square meter price is so much higher that the food grown locally remains unaffordable for the ordinary citizen. Especially, in the areas where food or raw materials are most scarce.
Fortunately, with our knowledge and technologies we can make a difference in these areas with practical horticultural solutions. Water Management has an important part in this.
CODEMA’s Water Management division is responsible for all aspects of water management. This division, which was previously known under the name B-E de Lier, which is still known in the market, is therefore engaged in:
- Fertigation – the contraction of irrigation and fertilization, which refers to the watering and fertilization of the plants.
- Water technology – The different methods of fertigation.
- Water storage and management – The management and use of water central to the growth process.
Total solution for Water Management
CODEMA always tailors its offer and service to the needs of its customers. From a closed and fully automated cultivation system to a ground-breaking solution for your water management. But the necessary maintenance and the availability of service technicians in the region are also considered.
CODEMA provides customization of the highest quality. That means lower maintenance costs and a longer service life. Or, as our water specialist Danny van den Bosch says:
‘’The investment for such a system is considerable. But what is considerable, if you can produce 10 kilos per square meter more every year? Are you suddenly relieved of all your worries about water?’’
The Water Management division sees opportunities in Western Europe, where horticulture is the most advanced, but also in water-poor areas such as California. Even in traditionally poor areas, most affected by food scarcity, CODEMA’s knowledge makes all the difference.
Water Management Opportunities in Western Europe
Horticulture is far ahead in the West-European countries compared to the rest of the world. We therefore speak of a high-tech cultivation environment. Here, for example, they are engaged in advanced, as much as possible closed, growth systems where no drop of water has to be lost. Unprecedented efficiency is achieved through underground water storage, automated water management, a mobile gutter system and the latest fertigation techniques.
CODEMA realizes, for example, innovative solutions for customers for collecting rainwater or using wastewater. In Western Europe, but also in certain areas of Canada, there falls about 900 litres of water per square meter of greenhouse per year. That is almost enough for cultivation, but it requires a good solution for water storage and cleaning. Storage because the water falls in the fall and winter while it is needed in the summer. And cleaning because we don’t want to leave diseases or fungi in the greenhouse. The rest of the water is replenished with fresh water. This water is of good quality in these areas, because the government or institutions such as regional water authorities, purify it.
Underground water storage Sparta Stadium
Under the parking lot of the Sparta Stadium, CODEMA in collaboration with KWR, realized an innovative solution with underground water storage. Tap water was previously used in the stadium for watering the field. Tap water is expensive and the water must then be drained and cleaned.
With the construction of an underground water storage, the rainwater from the parking lot is stored. By the use of various filters, including an oil filter, the water is cleaned and pumped to the nozzles if necessary. This is an efficient solution that offers a solution in many urban situations. Various pilots and subsidy applications are currently underway to do more with our rainwater.
Working together with CODEMA: Water Management
‘’I love nothing more than to visit customers and discuss their challenges with them. Based on a flow diagram containing all elements, we discuss in clear language how the system will function. That way I quickly get to the surface where we can really add value.’’
Almost 4 decades, that’s how long Danny van den Bosch has been working for CODEMA. He started as an installation technician just before the rise of substrate cultivation and saw the market develop. He has been working as an account manager for water and electrical engineering for years, but his passion revolves around people.
‘’We are growing fast and that also means that new, young people are entering the organization. They don’t have my knowledge and experience in the market, but each brings their own specialty. That is why we do everything we can to exchange as much knowledge as possible, which only makes the team, and myself, better.
It works the same with customers, we have to grow together. We supply the systems and of course the maintenance that goes with it, but their organization has to work with it. That is why it is so important that we first determine what is needed together.’’
Horticulture in water-scarce areas
In water-poor areas, water storage is often an important part of CODEMA’s solution. For example, in the American state of California, where there is a water shortage every summer. The soil conditions and rainfall determine which solution we choose. Ideally, we use the soil under the greenhouse for water storage. Here we temporarily pump the water into the ground and remove it when necessary. The result: the client is faced with much less uncertainty in one go.
Of course, CODEMA supplies the software and water management systems for this solution, in which water is used optimally in the growth process. We refer to these regions as “mid-tech”, which means that the market is less familiar with advanced cultivation systems. CODEMA therefore invests a lot of time in knowledge transfer and applies the technology that optimally matches the knowledge and needs of the grower.
Growing together: world food production
In poorer or more disadvantaged areas, water is much scarcer than in Western Europe, but its use is many times higher. We therefore speak of a “low-tech” environment, in which little or no use is made of modern horticultural techniques. In many cases, people still grow in open ground, the nutrition is done by feeling and irrigation takes place through sprinkling. With the latter, most of the water simply sinks into the ground. In addition, a large part of the already scarce water is lost.
In these countries, CODEMA helps growers with practical solutions to improve their yield, such as drippers. In addition, CODEMA ensures a gradual transfer of knowledge. By working together with the growers, we ensure a gradual transfer of knowledge so that we take food production to a higher level. CODEMA looks forward to growers, in such countries and regions, can use the growth methods that are so successful in the rest of the world, in the foreseeable future. In this way, we contribute to the growth of food production, especially in the areas that need it most.
CODEMA will continue to invest in research, experiments and collaborations in the field of water management in the coming years. Dealing well with this scarce raw material has a huge impact on the yield of customers and on our shared living environment.
Interview with Waterspecialist Danny van den Bosch of CODEMA Bergschenhoek, 30-03-2020
For more information, please visit www.codemasystemsgroup.com