Adriano Moretti

Italy: Yields are bigger with hydroponic cultivation

The floating system is a soil-less cultivation method based on the use of simple tanks filled with nutrient solution in which polystyrene panels float and support plants.

Results are interesting especially as regards leaf vegetables for the fresh-cut range. These are very popular in Northern Europe and are growing in Italy too, where demand for ready-to-eat mixed salad is growing.

Soil-less systems are ideal for these vegetables because they enable a quick turnover of cycles, uniform growth, increased quality and hygiene, a reduced use of nitrates and they also offer the possibility to automate some operations.

Adriano Moretti explained that "the advantage is that produce cultivated this way is usually preferred due to the fact that it is perceived as cleaner." In addition, "the yield per square metre is higher" and, in fact, production costs are lower.



Mr. Moretti started out with this system out of curiosity but then tested it with a variety of vegetables (salad, red chicory, basil, coriander, parsley and other herbs) and decided to "rent some greenhouses to test the solution on bigger surfaces before making any investments."

Between 2009 and 2011, areas dedicated to hydroponic cultivation increased up to the current 4,000 sq m on 10 ha. "Floating is used in summer, whereas in winter we still cultivate red chicory in fields.



Adriano Moretti and expert Annalisa Giordano have been recently contacted by Hydronov Inc., a Canadian company with thirty years of experience in hydroponic cultivation, for the start-up of a new crop. "We will help them with our technical and practical know-how. It is an honour that they decided to contact us because they want to benefit from our experience."

Contacts:
Az. Agricola Adriano Moretti
Via Boschit, 3/a
33090 San Giorgio della Richinvelda (PN)
Tel./Fax: (+39) 0427948285
Adriano Moretti
Mob.: (+39) 3391520959
Email: moretti.65@alice.it

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