Protected Agriculture: A Pillar Topic in GreenTech Americas 2023.
Greenhouse technology and digital penetration augur a sustainable future for this form of cultivation.
At the GreenTech Americas event held in Querétaro, Victor Manuel Juárez, General Coordinator of Territorial Operations at the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (SADER); Juan José Flores García, CEO of the National Association of Berry Exporters (Aneberries), and Homero Ontiveros, CEO of AgTech America and consultant for GreenTech Americas, highlighted the vast opportunities and challenges facing the farming method in the near future.
During the event, the success story of berries was discussed. Juan José Flores García, CEO of Aneberries, commented that "2023 is promising; growth rates are no longer in double digits surpassing 20%, (they are in) 10-12%, but the most interesting and positive aspect is that good jobs continue to be generated, contributing to the generation of foreign currency entering the country, allowing it to be part of that development and continue to be part of the growth of the populations where berry production is located.”
In his vision, protected agriculture is part of the path that berries must follow, but it is complex because it requires more specific care and use of natural resources. Homero Ontiveros predicted greater growth in the cultivation of berries and other foods with the assistance of greenhouse technology, as well as the penetration of digital innovations that will provide data to help producers make timely decisions based on climate, light, humidity, or plant conditions.
One of the main challenges is the lack of investment, acknowledged Victor Juaréz, who stated that "One of the important issues now is investment. I see a lot of European investment here at this exhibition. In Holland, they are masters of technology and innovation. I am very pleased that they are in Querétaro. It is a give-and-take. Many ideas come from there, but ideas also come from here.”
Juan José Flores mentioned that in Holland, bananas are grown in greenhouses because the climate is not suitable for their development, making it a very expensive technology in that country. On the other hand, in Mexico, crops such as tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, or strawberries can increase their productivity with greenhouses.
Rendón, H. & Yáñez, C. (2023, Abril). Berries: Caso de éxito de la agricultura protegida. Gigante agroalimentario, 1(14), 28-30.