These days, climate change is the biggest problem facing modern agriculture. This is even more the case in the geographical regions most exposed to extreme weather. Technology has made impressive progress in order to enable vegetable crops to grow even in contexts like this, opening out prospects inconceivable only a few years ago. Arrigoni, world leader in agrotextile development, will be presenting the applications of the latest research in the greenhouse sector at the 2023 edition of Growtech (Antalya, 22-25 November), the largest greenhouse agriculture show.
According to the IPCC (the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), the top scientific authority on the climate, “global average surface temperature in 2011-2020 increased by 1.1°C above the average temperature of the late C19th (before the industrial revolution) and is higher than at any other time in the last 100,000 years”. This situation is very worrying for food producers, where there is a clear need for rapid action with genuine solutions. In fact, the latest United Nations projections indicate that the number of people on Earth could rise to about 8.5 billion in 2030 and 9.7 billion in 2050.
Arrigoni, which specialises in the development and production of agrotextiles and agrofilms for use in farming, has come up with a number of solutions to enable crops to be grown even at latitudes unthinkable for fruit and vegetables until only recently.
Shading and temperature control
The solutions for the most critical climates include Prisma® Ldf Strong, the even higher-performing, even more efficient evolution of Prisma® Ldf, developed to guarantee crops a protected, safe environment. The figures speak for themselves: compared to the already outstanding performance of Prisma® Ldf, the Prisma® Ldf Strong agrotextile delivers: +60% strength; +78% light diffusion percentage; enhanced sunlight shading effect (30%); better control of internal temperature due to reduction in passage of short infrared radiation; and bigger savings on water. In other words, a guarantee for the production even in very problematical conditions of vegetables such as bell peppers, tomatoes and aubergines, with optimal water saving and reliable protection against the most invasive atmospheric agents.
Another solution for greenhouse crops is Robuxta® MDF, also by Arrigoni, which is already delivering excellent results. This covering protects plants from excessive sunlight, maintains an optimal internal microclimate and increases yields, thus also extending production and cropping cycles.
Defence against insect pests
Depending on the demands of the specific geographical area, Biorete® Air Plus is a very thin but very uniform monofilament covering, essential for perfect passive protection. As well as providing an effective barrier against insect pests, it is also an ideal solution for combating excessive humidity, leading to fungal diseases. In fact, Biorete® Air Plus also improves ventilation inside the greenhouse.
Protection for tunnels and greenhouses
At Growtech 2023 the Arrigoni Group will also be displaying some of its latest innovations, such as the Lirsa brand diffusive agrofilms, ideal for tunnels and greenhouses. They are outstanding in their excellent mechanical resistance to weather phenomena. Combined with high transmittance, their broad spectrum of applications makes them one of the most widely used products for protecting berries and vegetables. Specifically, medium diffusion agrofilms are designed to provide a high level of heat resistance, aided by the combined action of EVA copolymer and special IR absorbers. Application of this film therefore ensures uniform, earlier, higher crops. Arrigoni’s high diffusion agrofilms, on the other hand, are designed to distribute sunlight evenly inside the greenhouse by reflecting it in different directions, ensuring that it penetrates more effectively. What’s more, these films can also reduce the amount of near infrared radiation (NIR), lowering the temperature in the protected environment and preventing overheating. This type of solution is thus recommended when sunlight is usually strong, such as in tropical, desert or Mediterranean climates.