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“We’ve been able to double our speed for trellising”

“An oddly satisfying activity” is how Chelsea Maier describes the work in the cucumber greenhouse at the National Vegetable Protected Cropping Centre in Western Sydney University. Why is that? Because she is working with the Tom System, enabling her to speed up while reducing the risk of damaging the plants. 

Alternative to plastic clips and manual winding
The Tom System is an innovation of the Spanish company Agrifast and brings an alternative to plastic clips and manual winding. It might remind you of a stapler: with a metal ring, the plant is tied to the cultivation wire. The system was developed almost a decade ago, and ever since, growers from all over the world have started tying their crops to wires automatically with a small metal ring. The system is used for cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants, and combined with biotwine, it offers a way to 100% compostable waste.


Speeding up
While enabling a worker to clip more than 2000 plants per hour, the Tom System also provides a solution to the lack of labor available in the greenhouse industry.

The team with Western Sydney University has been using the Tom Tool in their cucumber crop. According to Chelsea, it is a time saver indeed. “We have been able to double our speed for trellising, which has been really important during this past Covid lockdown with lean staff numbers,” Chelse Maier says.

She shows how the system not only enables them to speed up their greenhouse work but brings benefits overall. “Using the system, rather than manual winding, reduces both handling and the risk of damaging plants. It’s a great system for maintenance tasks.”

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Photo of the Tom System in a tomato crop

Education and research
The National Vegetable Protected Cropping Centre is designed to house research, education, and training opportunities in modern protected cropping horticulture. The 1800 m2 glasshouse facility is equipped with high-tech infrastructure, controller systems, and some of the finest protected cropping technologies in the world, enabling them to develop the skills of Australia’s next generation of specialists and professionals. The NVPCC is a collaborative partnership between Western Sydney University, Hort Innovation, industry, and research partners to advance Australia’s horticultural capabilities.

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Israel announces creation of global seed company

Two Israeli seed producers, Nirit Seeds and TomaTech, have joined forces to create Israel’s largest vegetable seed company. This synergy will enable unique seed breeding research and development that will accelerate the company’s growth in the international seed markets.

Upon completion of the merger, the company will have more than 80 employees worldwide, including molecular biologists, breeders, agronomists, and others.
The company will improve its breeding activities in Israel, Spain, Mexico and Italy, as well as significantly expand its representation in the Netherlands and North America, with a particular focus on growing vegetables in high-tech greenhouses.

Nirit Seeds is one of the most successful internationally traded tomato and pepper seed producers, investing in the development of revolutionary genetic technologies. TomaTech is one of the leading tomato seed companies in Israel, developing premium varieties, including those resistant to the dangerous Tomato Brown Ruffle Virus (ToBRFV).

The production of crop seeds is one of the most advanced and high-tech sectors in Israel. According to the Seed Department of the Federation of Israel Chambers of Commerce, seed exports currently generate $200 million in annual revenue. There are about 25 large and medium-sized companies in the local industry.

For reference. According to market research, the global vegetable seed industry is valued at $8 billion a year and is growing at a CAGR of 8%.

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Karachay-Cherkessia became one of the leaders in the production of greenhouse vegetables at the end of 2021


Greenhouse vegetable production in 2021 reached a record 1.4 million tonnes. According to the Ministry of Agriculture of the Russian Federation, the leaders among the regions in this segment are the Karachay-Cherkess Republic, Lipetsk, Moscow, Kaluga, Volgograd, Novosibirsk, Saratov, Chelyabinsk regions, Krasnodar and Stavropol Territories, the Republics of Bashkortostan and Tatarstan. These regions account for more than 60% of the total production in the country. The intensive development of greenhouse projects in our country helps to provide Russians with fresh vegetables all year round. Last year, the harvest in winter greenhouses updated the 2020 record – more than 1.4 million tons of products were received. Including the production of cucumbers amounted to at least 830 thousand tons, and tomatoes – 590 thousand tons. It is expected that by 2025 the volume of vegetable production in year-round greenhouses will be at least 1.6 million tons of vegetables.


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December: Special Year Overview

In 2022, it will be 22 year since the new millennium started. Can’t believe it? Neither can we, but it is true. Before we go there, it is time to reflect on what has happened this year. Over the next couple of weeks, we will look back at 2021 and we will highlight the most important events that impacted the industry.

New greenhouses, events, even a few shows, technical novelties, and all other relevant news will pass by, offering you something other than Covid to talk about during Christmas and New Years’.


Wish your customers Happy Holidays
This special also offers an opportunity to put your company in the spotlight with a banner in this special box. This banner can be booked until December 24 on our newsletters. For more information, feel free to send an email to: 

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