KUBO Companies

KUBO Group consists of four companies that strengthen and support each other. At KUBO Group and its subsidiaries, we are synonymous with innovation and sustainability, constantly striving to advance the agricultural sector.

 

 

 

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ESG: The Driving Force of Corporate Responsibility

In the rapidly changing landscape of today's business world, the crucial role of ESG (Environment, Social, Governance) is becoming increasingly prominent. At KUBO Group, we embrace this change and see ESG not just as an obligation, but as an opportunity to strengthen our commitment to a sustainable future.

 

 

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Blue Lab: 3 years of experience

Blue Lab: 3 years of unique research

During 2020, KUBO began construction of Blue Lab, its own test greenhouse, which is unique in the world of greenhouse builders. This was the beginning of a unique discovery: the world's first CO2-negative greenhouse.

Horticulturists are very dependent on uncertain factors, such as the knowledge and skills of an experienced grower. To increase their control, they need to increase their grip on the growing process. To address this need, KUBO began research on autonomous growing.

The first step in KUBO's research was to look for partners. For example, Hoogendoorn Growth Management found a partner who could write the software for the climate computers. But the most important partner was not a company. It was a tomato plant. After all, to see how autonomous growing works, you have to put it into practice. For this purpose, two greenhouses were built in Monster, a few hundred meters away from KUBO's Dutch headquarters. One served as a "control group. This was a traditional, open greenhouse. The other was an Ultra-Clima.

Blue Lab is nothing like scientific research centers. KUBO researchers are not focused on publications, but on higher production, ways to achieve more output with less input. The knowledge gained in the test greenhouse can be directly incorporated into new products and advice to customers.

Building a test greenhouse to try out new cultivation methods and use that knowledge to better serve customers is completely new to the market. Until now, it was always normal for greenhouse builders to confine themselves to the design and construction of greenhouses. The cultivation process was something for growers and scientists. KUBO is thus taking a bold and costly step.

Year 1 The first year of Blue Lab was primarily a start-up year. Coordinating the software and hardware for the Ultra-Clima greenhouse proved to be quite a job. Is the system responding quickly and accurately enough? At the same time, of course, production had to continue. It soon became apparent that the standard growth strategy of seed supplier BASF was not working. Therefore, KUBO developed its own growth strategy.

Year 2 In Blue Lab's second year, the world faced an energy crisis. Soon the idea arose to shift the focus of the research. In addition to autonomous cultivation, cultivation with lower energy consumption was now being considered. Already in early spring, while the Netherlands was still experiencing night frost, the heating in the Ultra-Clima greenhouse was turned down. The crop was kept healthy and active with active air movement. The results exceeded expectations. The final yield exceeded the national average, and it was also remarkable that the crop remained vital without any loss due to parasites.

Year 3 Because there was no heating, the test greenhouse had to be ventilated more frequently. This gave KUBO researchers an idea. Would it be possible to stop adding CO2? This bold idea was immediately welcomed by the management of KUBO, which had long had the ambition to focus on low-carbon cultivation. From then on, all CO2 used by crops was taken from the outside air. At the same time, cultivation was done in the traditional way in the control group. The researchers' intuition soon proved correct: the same production was achieved in both greenhouses.

To an outsider, Blue Lab looks like any other greenhouse. In reality, this high-tech lab is full of sophisticated measuring equipment.

  • CO2 meters
  • Evaporation sensors
  • Plant temperature sensors
  • Thermometers
  • Humidity meters
  • Light intensity meters (PAR sensors)
  • Smart cameras
  • Radiation meters

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