A special project of Perfect Agriculture magazine, “Protected Soil”, featured an interview with Alexei Shemetov, the vice president for production of ECO-Culture agro holding. During the conversation with journalists, Shemetov told how the leader of domestic greenhouse vegetable production operates in modern economic conditions and what helps the company to grow vegetables of the superior quality even compared to the imported analogs.
First of all, the vice president noted that the holding is now developing rapidly: by the end of 2019 the total area of the company’s greenhouse complexes will reach 300 hectares. Another 200 hectares are scheduled for commission in 2020. Moreover, very soon there will be new projects to be launched in other countries. Right now, the main crops grown in the greenhouses are tomatoes and cucumbers.
The main concept of the holding’s development is to constantly expand its presence in the Russian vegetable market. The total volume of the domestic tomato market now amounts to 1.2 million tons, and the nearest goal of ECO-Culture is to cover one-third of this amount. Among the main activities of the agro holding is the production of environmentally clean and healthy cherry tomatoes. Here some hybrids, including the products of Dutch selection, are grown exclusively for Russia. These tomatoes are known for their excellent taste and still are to be evaluated by Russian consumers. Nevertheless, Alexei Shemetov has no doubt that they will receive a positive response.
As for the expansion of greenhouse complexes, the company is planning to increase the total area to 500 hectares in the nearest future. Meanwhile, further development of the holding will depend on many factors – consumer demand, market conditions, and public support.
ECO-Culture’s greenhouse complexes are not just gardens behind the glass but large-scale enterprises employing professional workers only. However, there is still a shortage of human resources in every new project. The company’s priority is staff education and independent personnel training.
Answering a question about the use of chemical agents and fertilizers, Alexei Shemetov claimed that the company’s policy was initially aimed at growing ecologically clean and healthy products with no chemicals and growth stimulators applied. A specially made nourishing solution with all the necessary nutrients is used for irrigation, and only biological methods are used for plant protection against pests and diseases.
Read more about the public support of the agricultural sector, construction of the complexes abroad, and also the differences of the Rusian greenhouses from the Dutch ones in a full text of the interview on perfectagro.ru.