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A garden founded by Robert Jordas in 2002 is pioneering greenhouse innovations in Finland.

A new step in product development was taken last summer, when a completely closed vertical farming system was introduced in Robbe’s Little Garden in Lindkoski.

The new technology improves the texture and shelf life of lettuce. (Photo: Robbes Lilla Trädgård)

The greenhouse, which was developed in collaboration with Finnish technology firms, has already proven a profitable investment.

“At the design stage, we estimated that, with optimal implementation, new technology could help us achieve a 20 percent higher yield of certain cultivars. This has turned out to be true, and the increase has been as high as 40–50 percent for some baby leaf lettuces”, explains Managing Director Robert Jordas.

The new technology and farming method have also improved the quality of the produce.

“The shelf life and texture of our lettuces are better and the oil content of our herbs higher than those achieved with more traditional farming methods. Basil, thyme and mint, for example, benefit considerably from the new solution”, Jordas says.

The growth rate of herbs and lettuces, and therefore larger crops, are a sum of many factors. In addition to the internal greenhouse climate and the amount of water given to the plants, adequate lighting plays a crucial role.

“In our new greenhouse, all the light required by the plants comes from an LED system, while the excess heat produced by the lights is extracted through a droplet curtain. This allows us to stack plant pots in layers across a relatively small area”, Robert Jordas explains.

“In addition, the lighting can be easily adjusted to create optimal conditions for each cultivar.”

The active entrepreneur already has new development ideas.

“We will continue our close product development collaboration with Fujitsu; our aim is to increase our growing area and make the system even more efficient and environmentally friendly.”

 

Text: Mikko Salmi, Luke

Photo on top of the page: Pixabay.

Published in Finnish in Maaseudun Tulevaisuus 3 of April 2017.

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