Evgeny Gubin is Horticulture Engineer at Crocus Labs. The Berlin-based startup was founded in 2020 and develops lighting technology for indoor and vertical farming. Their aim is not only to contribute to more efficient and cost-effective cultivation but also to higher yields and optimized harvests.

Evgeny, what is your technology, and why is it better than what we have on the market so far?
We develop lighting solutions for greenhouses and vertical farms. By developing our technologies, we create a significant reduction in energy costs in agriculture. The tradition of artificial lighting began in the 1960s / 70s. Sodium vapor lamps were used first, which can still be found in some greenhouses today - and they work! Subsequently came the combination of red and blue diodes (LEDs), which have led to the well-known pink light. Currently, there are also lighting systems with a so-called "full spectrum" with white light for us humans, but a big spectrum. Plants, however, are complex, and this is both species and variety specific. Each has a slightly different requirement - for example, in the different stages of development. Then there are the goals of the cultivator. While you want a rich harvest, it can also be about morphology or their ingredient concentrations or compositions.

Our lighting solutions bring high efficiency and a controllable spectrum, which in the future will be smartly controlled, similar to dynamic exposure. In this form, this does not yet exist in commercial horticulture.

Why is such a new solution needed? 
The problems we are currently seeing in agriculture are more extreme climates - for example, drought, heat, but also heavy rainfall, and the like - which is why controlled conditions are increasingly becoming the safer choice for farmers. However, for these options to become attractive and sustainable - economically and ecologically - new solutions are needed. Horticulture 4.0, as we call it.

Read the complete article at Organifarms.de