Jiffy Group opens Innovation Center
Jiffy Group announced the opening of its new Innovation Center. It features a university-standard laboratory and a custom-built climate chamber. Essentially a space that recreates the highly controlled environment of vertical farming, the climate chamber includes:
- Priva software to monitor the growing environment, collect data, and store and execute growing recipes
- Multiple sections to test different products for the cultivation of leafy greens, herbs, ornamentals, and more
- Philips GreenPower LED production modules with a GrowWise control system that is adjustable per section
- Dripper, ebb & flow, gutter, and pond fertigation systems
Jiffy’s Innovation Center is located at 1Plant, its flagship production facility in Zwijndrecht, Netherlands. The center enables the growing media specialist to carry out university-standard materials and plant growth research inhouse.
Climate chamber by Light4Food
Light4Food designed and built the climate chamber for Jiffy. Thanks to Light4Food’s extensive experience, it could advise on everything from the ideal location, to the software controlling the processes.
“As well as building climate chambers and hydroponic systems for customers worldwide,” said René van Haeff, Light4Food managing director, “we have several climate chambers of our own for R&D purposes.”
“The relationship with Light4Food grew out of their using Jiffy products in their systems,” adds Jiffy Innovation director Henri Beekers. “We’ll continue working with Light4Food to find new applications and improvements to our product range.”
Anticipating growers’ needs
The climate chamber and the Innovation Center are key resources in Jiffy’s aim to be a global leader when it comes to growing media innovation. They will help Jiffy focus on anticipating growers’ future needs as policies develop around the use of water, peat, and plastics.
These are complex issues, especially as Jiffy is committed to offering solutions to all propagators and growers, from produce to forestry, and from potted plants to nursery stock. That’s why it participates in multiple cross-border pre-competitive projects, and is building relationships with university spinoffs, startups, and other parties in the horticulture industry and beyond it.
The importance of open innovation and partnerships
“Open innovation can help us achieve faster turnarounds on these challenges,” said Henri Beekers.
As well as the new climate chamber, the Innovation Center includes a large prototyping lab. There’s enough space and equipment to pilot new fibers across different product ranges, including Preforma Plugs, Jiffy-7 Pellets, Jiffy Pots, and Substrates. Spare capacity ensures it’s future-proofed to meet the needs of Jiffy and its research partners going forward.
Light4Food: End-to-end solutions
Light4Food delivers end-to-end project development of hydroponic growing systems and climate chambers, including inhouse engineering and manufacturing:
- Business case engineering
- Engineering and project design
- Manufacturing and project realization
- Servicing and spare parts
- Setting up hydroponic systems
- Growing guidance, advice, and R&D