Hi-tech Netherlands-Style Farming

10-10-2019    21:03   |    DW

As the global population swells, so does the need for food. Could a Netherlands approach to farming that doesn't rely on soil, sunshine, water and pesticides be the answer?

The small, overcrowded, low-lying Netherlands might not sound like the answer to feeding a world whose population is predicted to rise to 9.6 billion people by 2050, but farmers and agronomists there would beg to differ.

The country known best globally for its traditional tulips and wooden footwear, is the second largest vegetable exporter in the world — with exports totalling €6 billion annually. Onions, potatoes and some southern climate vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers and chiles are among its top selling products.

The Netherlands is growing them with far less water and pesticides than if production was happening in the soil or open air.

They do it using greenhouse technology, termed 'precision farming', that some in the Dutch food industry claim is the most advanced in the world.

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Photo Credit: CHRIS WATTIE Reuters

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