Moldovan producers of vegetables are encouraged to use alternative energy resources

Vegetables producers in Moldova are being initiated in utilising alternative energy resources in production of greenhouse vegetables. This would increase their profits and would supply the market with vegetables all the year round. On Thursday, March 29, the second Forum of the Cluster “Production of vegetables on protected soil” is taking place in Chisinau. The forum is organised within the USAID Agribusiness Development Project, providing technical assistance for agricultural producers and enterprises which deal with production, processing and selling agricultural products. The chairman of the Agricultural and Food Technologies Department of the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industry, Pintilie Parvan, told the Forum that production of vegetables in Moldova has reduced in recent years. According to him, about 16,000 tonnes of vegetables are imported annually, which is a rather large amount. Parvan says authorities and producers likewise should make efforts to grow this volume in Moldova. According to Parvan, in 2007 the authorities for the first time support producers in this sector by exempting from VAT the imports of greenhouse equipment. About MDL 5 mln will be allotted in the Agriculture Supporting Fund for producers of vegetables in greenhouses. Given the fact that the energy resources are rather expensive, experts advise producers to use alternative resources - straw, branches left after pruning gardens and vineyards, a fact which would boost profits. Doctor of agricultural sciences Victor Rosca said that in order to warm up a hectare of greenhouse, producers would need straw left from about 30-35 ha planted with grain, which is affordable, given the fact that big quantities of vegetal waste is burnt uselessly each year. If the producers would use biomass for warming up their greenhouse, they would save at least 35-45% of traditional resources, the expert says. In the second half of the day, the participants in the Forum were expected to pay a study trip to Anenii-Noi and Stefan-Voda, to meet 4 vegetables producers who utilise different heating sources. There are more than 15 producers of vegetables in greenhouses in Moldova. The greatest producer is the Moldovan-Turkish company “Verde Mondial” in Criuleni. Annual production of greenhouses sums up about 2 or 3 thousand tonnes of vegetables.
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