The General Assembly of the United Nations declares 2021 the International Year of Fruit and Vegetables. The aim of the IYFV is to take a closer look at one of the most important sectors and to encourage a more comprehensive approach to production and consumption for the benefit of human health and the environment. Promoting sustainable fruit and vegetable production that contributes sustainable food systems.
World fruit and vegetable production is increasing, but it is still not enough. Improvements are needed throughout the whole value chain, from production to processing, marketing and consumption, to ensure that everyone has access to enough fruit and vegetables. Due to the rapidly growing demand for healthy food worldwide, the role of the substrate industry is also becoming increasingly important.
The demand for Soilless Substrates (Growing Media) has never been higher
Soilless horticulture systems as a part of extensive and sustainable future crop production methods have expanded rapidly around the world, especially in regions lacking water supply and quality soil. This is a worldwide trend – crop production in controlled environmental systems is increasing.
There are many advantages to growing crops in a greenhouse in Growing Media than using outdoor cultivation methods. The greenhouse protects against the adverse effects of the weather, as well as against the risk of soil-borne diseases. In many cases the Growing Media is used in regions where climatic conditions make outdoor cultivation impossible or economically disadvantageous. As well as semi-toxic pollution of agricultural soils is topical in many parts of the world. Thus, the cultivation of vegetables also takes place mostly in closed cultivation systems.
All over the world, more and more vegetables and fruits are grown in Growing Media to achieve maximum yields and sustainable food production.
Cultivation vegetables and fruits in Growing media allows to obtain:
- reduced amount of fertilizers and pesticides
- reduced amount of water
- reduced workforce
- less used arable land
- crop safety – controllable and predictable results
The demand for Peat for more Sustainable Horticulture is still growing rapidly
Peat is still the most suitable, valuable and reliable component in horticultural substrates and its demand increases annually. Peat has historically been used for the successful cultivation of various vegetables in soilless culture. Excellent component for vegetable Growing Media – due to its physical and chemical properties High Porosity, Water Holding Capacity , Slow Degradation Ratio , High Cation Exchange Capacity (CEC), Low pH and Nutrient Level etc. Peat is free of contaminates such as seeds, pests and diseases.
“Life Cycle Assessments (LCA) comparing peat, coir, wood fiber, compost and other raw materials have shown that peat is as sustainable as any other component of the growing media if harvested responsibly”
Peat is used in horticulture for vegetable transplants, container nursery, soft fruit, glasshouse salads etc. production. As you may see examples below peat as a component in soilless substrates is increasingly being used in the production of vegetables and fruits in various types of indoor and outdoor growing systems.
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