There are several advantages deriving from the use of Arrigoni screens with specific protection (purpose-specific nets) or specific culture (culture-specific nets):
Protection from atmospheric agents – such as hail, rain and wind
• Our R&D activities confirm that Arrigoni Agrotextile with specific protection improves the microclimate of crops by controlling ventilation, temperature and air quality, mitigating the direct impact of hail and rain on the foliage and on the fruits and the proliferation of bacteria fungi.
• Our R&D activities confirm that Arrigoni Agrotextile with specific protection regulates and optimizes the irradiation conditions of plants with the right intensity, diffusion and color of light.
• Our R&D activities confirm that Arrigoni agrotextile protection for specific insects and for specific cultivations makes it possible to reduce – up to the point of eliminating, the use of chemical protections in organic crops.
All Arrigoni protections bring clear benefits to the crops:
– Best sensory perception: our R&D activities show that the horticulture protected by Arrigoni nets are perfect for sight and touch, and are better to taste and smell. The result is a healthier product with an extended useful life (shelf life), discriminating factors for large retailers and that command higher sales prices.
– Early maturation compared to open field crops; this brings to the market early produce with a higher selling price.
– Conservation of the ecosystem: anomalous atmospheric events that affect the natural environment to the point of altering their balance, require protection that the built environment proposed by Arrigoni can guarantee.
But the advantages brought by Arrigoni agrotextile installations do not stop only with the increase in yield of cultivated land and the multiplication of cycles per season. While on the one hand the economic benefit of the greater quantity available for sale appears intuitive, research shows that the production differential guaranteed by the Arrigoni agrotextile also leads to a reduction in environmental pollution.
Let’s see how and why, starting from the observation of the different annual yield in tons per hectare (tons / ha) of the horticulture that most benefit from the protection:
The greater yield yields the benefit of removing the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere thanks to the chlorophyll synthesis: this beneficial contribution – as demonstrated by the data available after specific studies – exceeds the negative footprint due to the manufacture of the agrotextile and its use, with a positive environmental balance.
Since carbon dioxide (CO2) is the climate-changing gas that more than any other generates rises in the earth’s temperature (the so-called greenhouse effect), the environmental balance of the Arrigoni agrotextile can be measured in terms of CO2 emitted into the atmosphere (with production of the installed network) and of CO2 removed from the atmosphere thanks to the additional chlorophyll synthesis associated with the production yield differential.
The environmental footprint (carbon footprint) of the protection comes from the material of which it is composed, the high density polyethylene, whose production is optimized for use for at least ten years in the presence of the most severe weather conditions. Researches in Arrigoni have measured the level of CO2 production for which the production process of agrotextiles is responsible, from the production of virgin polymers that constitute the raw material to the entire transformation process in the finished product, through data collection and construction of specific calculation models (Note 1).
Even the beneficial contribution of the removal of CO2 in the environment thanks to the chlorophyll synthesis for vegetables is measurable, considering that:
• the carbon content is 50% of the dry weight.
• the dry substance in vegetables is 10% of the gross weight (90% is water).
• for each kg of dry substance, 0.5 kg of carbon are present, which is equivalent to 1.83 kgCO2 removed from the atmosphere in the chlorophyll synthesis process.
You can see the positive environmental impact by observing the fate of the cultivation of one hectare of land with the horticulture that most benefit from Arrigoni protections with agrotex, taking as an example a farmer who cultivates one hectare with watermelons: the environmental balance presents the following costs and revenues :
The protection of one hectare of field of watermelons requires 10,000 m2 of nets, weighing 700 kg. Considering that the production of 1 kg of agrotextile generates an intake of 3 kgCO2 eq in the environment, the coverage has an environmental cost of the emission of 2,100 kgCO2 eq in the atmosphere.
The Agrotextile performs its function of environmental protection for at least 10 years and – as indicated – it will allow a greater production yield in ton per hectare, which in fact passes from an average value of 18 to an average value of 90.
The greater yield for 10 years is equivalent to a greater production of watermelons of 720 tons, which bring their benefit of chlorophyll photosynthesis to the environment.
Considering that, on average, the dry weight of the vegetables is equal to 50% of the gross weight and that 10% of the dry weight represents the carbon content, the greater yield involves a greater carbon content of 36 tons.
Since 1 kg of carbon corresponds to 1.83 kgCO2eq, the greater production of watermelons, thanks to chlorophyll photosynthesis, removes a quantity of 6,588 kgCO2eq from the atmosphere.
Environmental Net Benefit
The net environmental balance of the protection of an open field of watermelons with Arrigoni agrotextile is then strongly positive. This is a reduction of atmospheric CO2 to the extent of approximately 2.5 times the CO2 emissions associated with production.
The balance of lettuce and tomato crops is similarly positive:
– for the lettuce, the annual yield in tons per hectare, which passes from 25 in the open to 125 ÷ 150 in cultivation protected by Arrigoni nets – the net benefit is measurable in about 3 times the CO2 emissions associated with production;
– for the tomato – given the annual yield in tons per hectare, which passes from 50 in full field to 75 in cultivation protected by Arrigoni nets – the net benefit is estimated at 10% of the CO2 emissions associated with production.
Other valuable elements related to the use of agrotextiles
There are other positive elements that suggest the protection of crops with agrotextiles:
• Recyclability: collection systems are already present in some countries which make disposal to special operators preferable to disposal.
• Demographic support: quality and more abundant harvests meet the nutritional needs of demographic growth in the third world.
• Food democracy: the microclimatic control of crops widens the cultivable territories, bringing nourishment to those who could not otherwise benefit from them.
• Production of farmed meat: climate control in covered farms, possible with agrotextiles, allows a useful increase to feed a higher number.
Safe Food for a Safe World – our Brand Identity Payoff epitomize the values, philosophy, vocation and objectives of Arrigoni:
To offer economically viable and eco-sustainable solutions to the agribusiness.