Getting Started with Greenhouse Farming

Greenhouse consultants respond to questions regarding greenhouse farming on AgricultureInformation.com forum. Following is a summary of the discussion

Members who participated in this discussion :
• growtech
• agriplast
• gprao
• deep63
• shrushti
To connect with them visit www.agricultureinformation.com

Factors to consider while Setting Up Greenhouse
Member each plant wants to set up a greenhouse in Ahmedabad and wants to learn about greenhouse structure. He also wants to confirm claims by a greenhouse consultant that capsicum production in a greenhouse is 50 ton/acre in a year and at current price levels of Rs. 40/kg, he will earn Rs. 20 lac in a year. The consultant also has told him that it takes 1.5 years to achieve break even.

One consultant also promised to get him more subsidy from government at an extra fee. Mr. Kirti S, moderator on Agriculture.com forum informs, “Greenhouse bell pepper production is based on a year-long production cycle. Typically, seeding occurs in early to mid-October. Plants are moved from the nursery into the production greenhouses six weeks later.”

He advises, “Cultivate capsicum varieties in 16000 sq mt greenhouse to yield 62 MTA (3 crops per year) per acre. Thus, the total production will be 250 MTA capsicums per year, at the total project cost of Rs.360.00 lakhs.” Technical moderator Ashwini further adds, “Please let us know if you want to cultivate colored capsicums or green capsicums. The green capsicums yield is higher than colored capsicums but does not fetch that high price of Rs.40/kg throughout the year.”

She informs, “If the green house with fan and pad system of cooling design is adopted, then you can expect a yield of 62 MTA (3 Crops per year) per acre (area of 16000 sq m),” adding, “You can diversify the crops if you plan to go in for 2 small greenhouses – may be 20 guntas each. Please don’t rely too much on the over- priced bill which the consultant has assured. Please find out from the consultant and let us know or the agriculture officer in that area about the specifications provided by consultant for the construction of greenhouse and then proceed if you want to claim a subsidy.”

Mr. Dilip Deshmukh of Grow Tech, Pune informs, “The plant population for colored capsicum is around 12000 plants per acre. If the plants are properly maintained, then each plant can produce around 5 kg fruits. So in one acre, the total production would be 60000 kg. or 60 tons.”

Regarding Mr. Sandupan’s concern about revenue and breaking even, Mr. Deshmukh says, “The market rate of capsicum fluctuates as per demand supply ratio, in the range of Rs.25 to 120 per kg. So your revenue will depend upon the prevailing market rate when you are supplying your products in market,” adding, “If you get maximum rate your project cost will be recovered within 1.5 years’ period. I believe one should set this project as a totally commercial viable project and not since government gives subsidy. One has to treat subsidy as bonus.”

Mr. Sanghavi of Esteem Agro & Foods Pvt Ltd gives a list of crucial factors to consider when setting up greenhouse: ’
1. Types of greenhouse
2. Area
3. Humidity in our area
4. Crops prevalent in market

Polyhouse vs. Greenhouse
Member Mr. Deep wants to know the difference between a polyhouse and a greenhouse, “Which technology is more suited for Punjab? What is the approximate cost of the same for one acre and the return in one year?”

Pointing out to some of the features of a polyhouse and comparing it with various other structures, Mr. Rajeeb Kumar Roy, CEO, Agriplast Tech India Pvt. Ltd, says, “The popular model of polyhouse in India is covered with plastic on the top and insect net on the side.
It prevents rain from entering in. In case of a shade net house (covered with shade net) and insect net house (structure covered with insect net only), rain can enter to the plant root zone.”

He further says, “If you are talking about absolutely no or less rain fall area, you may attain similar results in polyhouse and net house. But if the area in consideration has heavy rainfall, then definitely polyhouse is a better option. However, both greenhouse and polyhouse can withstand heavy rains. In Israel, most of the net house cultivation gives exactly the same yield or even better yield than greenhouse as this is used to grow crops in a very low rainfall area of Arava Desert.”

Regarding the crops best suited to greenhouse, Mr. Roy avers, “Some of the popular crops in greenhouses are roses, gerbera, carnations, liliums, capsicum, cherry tomatoes, tomatoes, herbs like chives, basil, ginger, mint, and coriander. Strawberries are also very popular internationally but it has still not come to India in a big way. The yield of vegetables, fruits and flowers depends on many variables like varieties, seasons, soil type and location, and also the quality of the grower themselves.”
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Grow Tech

Provides consultancy for setting up greenhouses, polyhouses and shadenets. Located at  Pune, Maharashtra

Dilip Deshmukh

Grow Tech was established in 1993 by Mr. Dilip Deshmukh. The company provides turnkey solutions in greenhouse farming. It is located at Pune, Maharashtra. Mr. Deshmukh is a consultant of greenhouses, polyhouses, shadenets and turnkey projects.

The annual turnover of the company in the last financial year was Rs.2 cr. “Grow Tech’s comprehensive approach to greenhouse turnkey projects begins with initial feasibility check and covers design, construction and installations of the greenhouse structure, cultivation techniques, irrigation, providing fertilizers, pesticides and micro-nutrients, maintaining temperature and humidity, cutting, pruning, cleaning practices, the post-harvest techniques cutting, storage and to finally transport with attractive and safe packaging,” maintains Mr. Deshmukh.

The company also offers improvements and changes with existing structures to adopt latest technology like variety of coverings, evaporative cooling systems, and thermal screening with full automations.

“We offer greenhouse with evaporative cooling systems, which are useful for hardening of plantlets by tissue culture labs as well universities and research institutes for R & D purpose,” says Mr. Deshmukh

He says, “Grow Tech shade net houses and tunnels are being used for nurseries to raise commercial saplings and grafting as well cultivation for seasonal vegetables.”
The vegetables commonly grown in greenhouses are color capsicum, cucumber, lettuce, cherry and tomato, he informs. Regarding the technology used by the company in setting up greenhouse and shade nets, he says, “We offer high quality and latest technology to our clients.”

Suggested Policy Reform
Suggesting policy reforms, Mr. Deshmukh says, “Government should give minimum fixed prices for agricultural products. There is also need for planning in cultivation.” He adds, “We want more and more farmers to adopt greenhouse technology so that they should be able to export vegetables to European countries and increase our export to large extent.”

Commenting on big retailers like Wal Mart entering India, Mr. Deshmukh says, “It would benefit farmers in India. These companies insist on standard and disease-free varieties. So those who follow good agricultural practices will have great demand. This is possible only when you cultivate under protected environment i.e. greenhouse cultivation.”
Mr. Deshmukh is a mechanical engineer and has been working in this field for the last 15 years.

For more information, contact :  Mr.Dilip Deshmukh, Grow Tech, 11, Vishakah,Kale Park, Baner Road,  PUNE 411 008 Mobile: 09822252989 Email: growtechgreenhouses@gmail.com

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Agriplast Tech India

Rajeeb Kumar Roy

Bangalore, Karnataka based greenhouse material suppliers. Offers accessories for greenhouses too Agriplast was started in 2004 in Bangalore. Mr. Rajeeb Kumar Roy is the CEO of the company. The company supplies greenhouse materials in India. “We have     achieved an average growth of about 30% -50%,” says Mr. Roy.

Product Range :
Agriplast deals in complete range of products for protected cultivation. The product range includes:
• Green house and mulching films, geo membranes from Ginegar Plastic Products Ltd, Israel
• Photo-selective ‘Chromatinet’ nets and ‘Aluminet,’ and innovative optical barrier insect nets like opti net from Polysack Plastic Industries Ltd
• HDPE woven covering solutions and skirting films from PIC-Plast, Israel
• Soilless growing troughs from Mapal Plastics, Israel
• Shade net house and insect net house structure and do it yourself type greenhouses from P Marom Israel.

Mr. Roy says, “Besides this, we also have soil less growing media, accessories for greenhouses, profiles for fixing plastic, imported and coated poly locking springs, air circulation fans, imported insect nets, monofilament nets, self-drilling screws, anti-hail nets, shade nets, and crop support twines.”

Speaking about the challenges faced, he says, “It is always a challenge to introduce a concept in the market and fight tough competition subsequently, purely on price. When we introduce a new product in the market we not only know where to recommend this to the farmer, but also when not to recommend it. This is possible because of the solid research back up by our Israeli principals. However when cheaper local imitations flood the market, the farmers disregard quality opting for cheaper alternatives.”

Future Plans :
Speaking about the future plans, Mr. Roy says, “We are strengthening our position by adding new products and technologies which are in the pipeline. We also intend to expand our dealership network in coming year. The first one in the pipeline is the net covered structures from P Marom which will be a joint venture with P Marom Israel.”

Mr. Roy holds a master’s degree from IIT Kharagpur in agricultural engineering and has also done executive general management program from IIM Bangalore.

For more information, contact : Agriplast Tech India Pvt. Ltd, #13, Victorian Meadows,
Behind Bageecha Restaurant,  Airport Varthur Road, Bangalore – 560037, Karnataka
Telefax: +91 80 41693451, Email: agriplast@gmail.com, Web: www.agriplast.co.in

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  • sankha

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    we are the leading manufacturer of all these in India. Garware-Wall Ropes Limited, Pune. Phone-09325817119, mail- smandal@garwareropes.com

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