Swiss company Clean Greens has developed a process to grow herbs and lettuce without soil. In the aeroponic system, the roots are sprayed with water and nutrients by a robot. This world first makes it possible to produce leafy vegetables in rapid cycles all year round around the world. This makes it possible to compete with cheaper imported produce and ensures that transport emissions are gradually reduced. "We already knew that Aeroponic was the best technology for growing leafy vegetables, but it was the use of a mobile robot that enabled us to irrigate very evenly, so that our customers can grow their crops with great consistency," CEO Bernhard Baumgartner tells 20 Minuten.
Today, the system is optimised for leafy vegetables, i.e. everything from lettuce to aromatic herbs to baby leaves. Baumgartner: "The technology enables fast production cycles and year-round production, so we can compete with imported products in terms of price. Aeroponic technology is also suitable for strawberries or potatoes, but that requires a redesign of our system."