In 2021, 4ESSE was patented and is now the exclusive holder of a new plastic duct for the soilless cultivation of strawberries, tomatoes and other crops.
Duct for the cultivation of strawberries at FeVi Frutta in Policoro (Photo provided by 4ESSE)
The company is located in Cirò Marina (Crotone) and was established in 1998. It produces polypropylene and polyethylene plastic crates mainly for the transport of fresh produce. "The high quality level of products is due to the choice of raw materials as well as the machinery used. Our main objective is complete customer satisfaction," explains owner Giuseppe Caratozzolo.
Giuseppe Caratozzolo with his sons Rocco (first from the left, who already works for the company as representative/customer manager and social manager), Giuseppe junior and his nephew Emmanuel (far right), the new generations - Photo provided by 4ESSE
"The need for new plastic ducts came from the need to solve a new problem shown by iron ducts such as rust, which alters organoleptic properties and leads to periodical maintenance costs and temperature variation."
(Photos provided by 4ESSE)
The duct is made of 80% recycled material , it's grey and with a size of 150x31x8 cm. Terminals for discharge and drainage (at both ends of the ducts) and supports that hold the duct in place with slots for irrigation pipes are also supplied.
The advantages of plastic ducts as explained by a producer
Piero Pannone recently purchased 400 ducts for his company in Fondi (Latina) producing soilless red plum tomatoes. "We have just finished assembling around 800 meters of plastic ducts. We have made this choice to deal with the problem of iron deterioration."
Assembly phase (Photo provided by 4ESSE)
"The plastic ducts look well built and, so far, I am very pleased because assembly is very quick and simple, you just need to screw them. In addition, they are lighter and easier to handle while at the same time sturdy. Time will tell how they will perform, but I am optimistic."
According to Pannone, another advantage is the disposal. "As ducts are made of recyclable plastic, they are easier to dispose of compared to iron ones treated with varnishes that require specific processes."
Ducts for the cultivation of red plum tomatoes at azienda agricola Pannone in Fondi (Photo provided by 4ESSE)
Giuseppe Caratozzolo adds that "plastic is easier to clean and makes ducts last longer. In addition, it maintains a constant temperatures and makes plants grow quicker. Last but not least, our patented system uses less water than the traditional systems."
4ESSE supports circular economy with the objective of achieving sustainable development. All products are developed according to this principle. The company holds the "Plastica seconda vita" (Second life plastic) certification, which means it uses salvaged and recycled plastic.
(Photo provided by 4ESSE)
"Considering the many requests for this product received in 2022 from tomato producers, we started producing a new mold to produce a plastic grid that will work both as a spacer and support."
(Photo provided by 4ESSE)
"The support will give more space to tomato roots, which are long and robust, and will remain under the grid and grow as they should. With this system too, the water will drain in the duct."
(Photo supplied by 4ESSE)
4ESSE will attend Macfrut (stand D4-001), to be held at Rimini Fiera on May 4th-6th, 2022.