Greenhouse horticulture is billed to be one of the hot topics of the 36th edition of Macfrut slated for beginning of May in Rimini.

The horticulture annual jamboree will have a Greenhouse Technology Village dedicated to greenhouse horticulture innovation.

The village will host manufacturers of technologies, materials and technical equipment, seed companies and nurserymen in a specialised setting and some of the innovations are set to become daily working tools for producers.

This year, the international conference will run under the banner: ‘The future of greenhouse farming and greenhouse farming in the future’.

Experts indicates that by 2050, the world’s population will reach 10 billion and, as a result, the fruit and vegetable demand will amount to 3.5 billion tonnes, which is 900 million tonnes more than today.

The population is expected to concentrate more and more in large metropolitan areas, whereas crops will need to have cultivation systems capable of generating higher yields through intensive crop cultivation.

In addition, this will be achieved mainly by growing crops in ‘climate controlled environments’, which are less susceptible to risks associated with a growing number of harmful pathogens and climate change.

During the annual event Macfrut also announces a proposal to convert disused industrial sites into centres of excellence in horticulture innovation.

The sector has undergone a major revolution and currently allows top-quality produce to be grown in small areas, without climatic influence and with considerable energy savings.

In protected horticulture, both hardware and software technology play a crucial role in production and management processes.

Greenhouses where temperature, humidity, light and nutrient intake can be controlled and managed through fertigation are steadily gaining importance.

The advantages of using natural resources more efficiently are becoming increasingly evident: greenhouse crops allow water and chemical fertiliser consumption to be optimised and environmental impact to be reduced to a minimum, since, in a protected environment, fewer plant protection products are required to grow crops.

In addition to this exhibition, an international conference is also scheduled during the event, organised with the scientific cooperation of Cecilia Stanghellini of the Greenhouse Horticulture Unit of Wageningen University & Research (WUR), trends in horticultural production for the European and global fresh produce market will be examined, as well as the latest trends in production technology.

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