India’s economic prosperity is dependent on Agriculture. Greenhouse farming in India over the last 50 years has demonstrated some outstanding achievements in agricultural technologies. It is quickly adapting many newer Agri tech innovations and making up for the missed opportunity to increase our agricultural productivity to match those of many countries that stand as economic powers of the world. One such new and effective technology that is improving the productivity, profitability, sustainability of our major farming systems is Greenhouse farming.
Greenhouse Farming Technology
Greenhouse farming technologies have been there for a long time but using them as a primary way to grow agriculture products was not tapped into until recently, especially in India. Although about 95% of food crops or cash crops are still grown in open fields, farmers and agriculturists are innovating to grow some high-value crops under protected environments using greenhouses.
Growing plants under natural environmental conditions is a natural and easiest path to follow, but if one wants to grow plants in a foreign environment or extreme climatic conditions, Greenhouses and technologies are used to maintain crop production and management by continuously monitoring and providing protection from excessive harsh conditions.
Therefore, greenhouse farming can be defined as a technology providing an ideal microclimate favorable to the production of plants. And It is used to protect the plants from many unfavorable climatic conditions such as wind, cold, precipitation, excessive radiation, extreme temperature, insects, and diseases. Greenhouses are covered with transparent or translucent framed or inflated structures to get optimum growth and productivity of crops under various environmental conditions that can be partially or fully controlled.
Advantages of Greenhouse Farming
- The yield of greenhouse farming can be 10-12 times higher than that of outdoor farming depending upon the type of greenhouse, type of crop, environmental control facilities.
- Under controllable greenhouse conditions, crop production is more reliable.
- Greenhouse farming is suited for both vegetables and horticultural crops.
- With a greenhouse, farming can be done year-round
- Any vegetable and fruit that grow in a particular season can therefore be available for off-season production.
- Many plants that are genetically superior and disease-free are produced because of close monitoring.
- The use of chemicals and pesticides can be efficiently managed and the utilization of chemicals can be kept to a minimum for protection against pests.
- The water requirement of crops is limited in a greenhouse because of less transpiration and fewer unused spaces.
- Maintenance of stock plants and cultivating grafted plant-lets is easier.
- Research and observations of plants are possible as they can be easily tagged and maintained
Return On Investment with Greenhouse Cultivation in India
The cost of constructing a greenhouse can vary with the location, size, and shape of polyhouse farming. The greenhouse structures can be of a variety of materials like wooden or GI/ Steel which can be used based on the usage and budget. Greenhouses can be naturally ventilated or environmentally controlled.
The cost of bigger naturally ventilated greenhouses of size 1000 m2 ranges from Rs.800 to 900 per square meter while the environmentally controlled ones can cost higher. Depending on the gadgets used to control and the level of automation the investment can be 2 to 3 times the naturally ventilated greenhouses. It was observed that the construction cost/ unit area is more for smaller size polyhouses than the larger polyhouse. Similarly, the cost of cultivation is seen to be lower for the larger ones than smaller greenhouses. Because we cultivate more, and the return on investment is higher for large greenhouses.
According to research conducted by Agro research centers in India yield under greenhouse farming was 5-8 times as compared to open crop cultivation. Vegetable crops like capsicum, cucumber, and tomatoes grown under poly houses produced 1060kg, 1460 kg, and 1530 kg per 100 square meters of area. More than 90% of yield was obtained during off-season fetching 2-4 times more market price than during their normal season. The crop duration was 4- 9 months and can be extended with the application of micro-irrigation and fertilization and more yield can be achieved making it. And possible to harvest a single crop year long with minimum additional inputs and higher income.
Flowers like Carnations, Gerbera, Lilly, Rose, orchids, anthurium, etc. when grown under greenhouse farming are giving higher returns and also top quality produce.
Although greenhouse building may seem like a costly affair, it is possible to get back the investment within a period of 3 to 5 years. With high-yielding vegetable plants, one can get a return on investment within 2-3 years by using quality planting materials.
The success of the greenhouse cultivation in India project depends on the scale of the project. A project with a minimum of 1 -2 acres has the right economic viability and long term sustainability.
Scope of Greenhouse Farming in India
Greenhouse farming in India is gaining popularity even though the initial costs may seem costly and intimidating because one can make huge profits over the long run with a greater return on investment. Governments and horticultural departments also provide subsidies to encourage greenhouse farming among farmers. It has become easier than ever to research and approach the agencies with a detailed project reporting the production technology, cost components, margin, etc. to facilitate the process and make the dream of greenhouse farming in India a success.
Ideal Agrotextiles is a leader in the manufacture and supply of agro textiles used in greenhouse cultivation in India, other countries too. And can guide you to understand the use and application of each of its products. We have superior quality products and have been serving the agro-tech sector including agriculture, forestry, horticulture, floriculture, landscape gardening, etc. For over a few decades. For more information on our products and services please visit our website https://idealagrotextiles.com/ or call us at 040-27756001/27753333.