EcoTrack 11: Controlled environment tomatoes - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

EcoTrack 11: Controlled environment tomatoes

By Tara Hastings - bio | email

Posted by Lisa Strawbridge - email

An Arizona produce grower is side stepping potential salmonella hazards by growing his tomatoes inside.

From the time they are tiny seeds to the time they sprout and flower, the grower wants to get as many growing heads per square foot per square yard as possible.

To the time the 50-foot long vines produce fruit, Eurofresh controls everything these tomatoes get. From the amount of sunlight to the closed irrigation system.

All the excess water gets collected, and then gets recirculated. Even bumblebees pollinate all of the flowers naturally. Because of the enclosed structure they're also able to introduce beneficial bugs into the environment to kill off pests.

Eurofresh started with 10 acres in 1992, and now has grown to a 274-acre complex. It's enough to grow a quarter of a million tomatoes.

When it began, the concept of growing commercial quality tomatoes indoors was fairly new, but the idea is catching on around the world.

It's another advantage of being in that greenhouse you know. You're able to control mother nature -- not perfectly, but a lot better than you can outside.

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