The search for suitable, renewable raw materials and substrates is becoming increasingly important in professional horticulture. Raw materials such as coco peat, bark, compost, and wood fiber from renewable sources are increasingly being used. Van der Knaap and Den Ouden Group share the ambition of further developing the use of sustainable and circular raw materials.
One of these new developments is the renewable raw material ‘Kompofibre’. This circular, RHP-certified raw material consists of compost and Hortifibre (wood fiber from Den Ouden Group) and can be mixed into a substrate.
"Wood fiber makes the mixture airier, and compost (made from wood, grass, and leaves) stimulates active soil life", they show. "With the right combination of these raw materials in a substrate, active soil life is created that can contribute to a more resilient crop. This will gain importance in the future, for example, because increasing restrictions are being placed on the use of chemical crop protection."
No two crops are the same and each crop makes specific demands on the substrate in order to grow optimally. The customer's wishes and the demands of a given crop on the mixture are therefore considered when mixing a substrate. This always involves customization. “When we develop renewable raw materials, we always look at the added value of this raw material in a mixture. Each raw material has its own unique properties. Making the right combination allows you to create the optimal conditions for growth,” says Luuk Braam (Product Development Manager at Den Ouden Group). Certification also plays a very important role by ensuring that quality is guaranteed.