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Expert: gpabot
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Plants are cultivated in hydroponic system

Controlled-environment Agriculture

SKU: course-94 Category:

Experts Biography

Gerard Bot

Gerard Bot graduated as physicist at Delft University in 1972 and got his PhD degree in Agricultural Sciences at Wageningen University in 1983. He worked for about 35 years on greenhouse development to more efficient production facilities. In 1989 he entered the former DLO Institute for Environmenta

Full Biography

Course Description

1-1) Course Description
The challenges of limited land available for food production, growing scarcity of irrigation water supply, precarious weather and changing climatic patterns, and a need to restrict chemical use are paving the way for more controlled-environment agriculture (CEA) production systems to produce a safe, abundant food supply in an efficient, sustainable manner. With such systems, producers are able to manipulate the crop environment to the desired conditions using precise technologies and equipment to improve the efficiency of operations as well as the consistency of products. This has already started with simple CEA systems, but the more advanced systems now available offer greater power and precision.

The most advanced CEA systems have the advantage of high levels of certainty in meeting contractual commitments for the delivery of produce because cropping intensity and production
cycles are programmed to meet market requirements in terms of volume, timeliness, and quality. Production is tailored to consumer specifications from the very beginning. Such production systems also reduce the risks of diseases and pest infestations and the corollary labor required to address such problems in conventional agriculture. They also address the aging of farmers, which has resulted in a scarcity of farm labor. With such CEA production systems, artificial intelligence is taking over many of the tedious tasks formerly performed by farm workers.

The more popular CEA systems like greenhouses and hydroponics-based technologies have been widely adopted in many advanced countries in Europe, North America, and Asia, notably Japan, the Republic of Korea, and the Republic of China, to produce various horticultural crops. Some investments in such systems have also been made in periurban areas in Malaysia, Thailand, and the Philippines. The systems are seen as having great potential for agribusiness investment and for increasing agricultural productivity and food production, even with declining areas of prime agricultural land and obvious impact of climate change on agriculture

1-2) Course Objectives
To provide basic knowledge of the concepts and principles of CEA, as well as the basic skills, tools, techniques, and technologies of CEA production systems.

Scope of the Course

The tentative course structure is:

Module 1: Introduction to CEA (e.g., definition and key concepts; socioeconomic and environmental importance; global trends; types of CEA; and issues, challenges, and opportunities)

Module 2: Growing systems and the crops they support

Module 3: Crop maintenance (e.g., crop layout, plant lighting, pollination)

Quiz 1 (for self-assessment based on questions from Modules 1, 2, and 3)

Module 4: Irrigation systems

Module 5: Plant nutrition

Module 6: Insect pests and diseases and their management

Quiz 2 (for self-assessment based on questions from Modules 4, 5, and 6)

Module 7: Greenhouse structure and design (including different types of environmental

control systems, their construction, and maintenance and operational costs)

Module 8: Environmental control and energy conservation

Module 9: Food quality and safety (e.g., GAP, GHP)

Module 10: Marketing ofCEA produce

Quiz 3 (for self-assessment based on questions from Modules 7, 8, 9, and 10)Final Examination


Participants are expected to finish the course before the following date:

Date: 31st October 2017



  1. :

    Good, I would like the course.

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