Sustainable agricultural eco-system: business and technological solution for eco-conscious vegetable cultivation using on-site produced algae fertilizer. This technology aims at establishing a sustainable farming system by using locally grown algae. It is an innovative technological solution for environmentally conscious and economical farming. This technology offers a sustainable farming system that can provide farmers, having a land of over 20 hectares, with self-produced algae fertilizer. The improved stress tolerance and the lower use of chemical fertilizers decreases production costs by itself. Additionally, the demand for plants and fruits produced with sustainable technology is increasing in a rate that exceeds the supply, as the number of environmentally conscious consumers grows.
The advantage of algae over chemical fertilizer are as follows: Plants can utilize the nutrients more quickly and effectively Algae improve the resistance of plants and may increase yield The technology provides alternative cultivation method using algae as a fertilizer The installation and maintenance of the technology does not require specialized skills
As algae contains large amounts of plant hormones that affect growth, they have an influence on the growth of many plants. In addition, they contain many micro and macro elements, vitamins, peptides, polyunsaturated fatty acids, and therefore may affect other parameters of many plants. Current studies show that algae fertilizer has positive effects on the following: Tomato – increase in the germination rate, the biomass, the number of branches and flowering, glucose and fructose content, drought-tolerance and carotenoids in the crop Carrot and radish – increase in the mass of the root—the edible/useful part Cucumber – increase in the biomass of both roots and shoots through the increase in growth hormones Wheat and corn – increase in the root biomass, height, and germination rate Lettuce – increase in the height, weight and leaf number, chlorophyll, carotenoid and vitamin C contents; also decrease the amount of nitrate in the crop—nitrate is easily formed into toxic nitrite
The application of this technology would provide farmers with the following benefits: Improved stress tolerance Lower use of chemical fertilizers Easy installation and maintenance Dependent on the species, various improvements plant properties have been observed