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“The joint interest of our university and Tungsram is that the results of tests reflecting the future of agriculture can be used in education as well, not only in scientific research. For this MATE guarantees to create learning material for the newly established department, to organise professional trainings according to demand and to assure the development of researches useful for indoor plant production and livestock farming by providing professional counselling” – stressed Rector of MATE Prof. Dr. Csaba Gyuricza.

“The joint work with MATE is a milestone in the cooperation of higher education and the private sector and one of the first events nationally when a university and a company establish together a research institute for agricultural research” – said President & CEO of Tungsram Joerg Bauer. “With this Tungsram wants to be part of the innovative future of Hungarian agriculture and reach back to an era when Hungary was among the five largest agricultural research nations of the world. As a technology provider we are able to turn the results achieved together with MATE into marketable solutions and achieve success on the international market. In the framework of the agreement we welcome the students of MATE either for traineeship or dual education” – he added.

In the May of 2021, the region’s first commercial size research and exhibition vertical farm was built at the Budapest plant of Tungsram where in controlled climatic conditions various farming experiments can be carried out using individually adjustable close system automatic nutrition, CO2 fertilization and special light combinations. The altogether 150 square meters, completely Hungarian-developed and manufactured facility was built from 575M HUF, with 250M HUF contribution from the Ministry for Innovation and Technology. On multiple points of the state-of-the-art technology using AI and machine learning, sensors collect valuable data that now can be accessed by the experts and students of MATE.

Safe work during the pandemic

We have succesful third party audits behind us that all examined our compliance with three international standards. These are the ISO 14001 Environmental Management System – which required recertification – ISO 45001 Occupational Health and Safety Mangement Systems and ISO 50001 Energy Management System that both required surveillance audits. The aim of the audit certification of these systems for the certified organisation is to prove its dedication for the protection of the environment and energy efficiency and guarantee the establishment and maintenance of a healthy and safe working environment through its operating environment, energy and labour safety management system. Beyond this the organisation must have provide proof that it makes efforts to reduce its environmental impacts. By acquiring the certificate the organisation can certify its compliance with social expectations and by this the image of the company improves.

In February Hajdúböszörmény began the challenge and managed to comply with the requirements of three standards at once. Budapest was the second in line. During the third wave of the pandemic the audit series continued in Zalaegerszeg and Nagykanizsa with online documentary and on site practice checks. Kisvárda was the final contestant in the factory audits. After this at the end of May a complete central documentary and process audit took place in the HQ of Tungsram. During the total of 6 audits no findings were identified.

The auditor recognized the fact that despite the difficult pandemic situation we were able to not only sustain our level of excellence regarding environment protection, labour and health safety and energy efficiency but we could also improve these. As best practice they named our corporate coronavirus prevention system, actions and the COVID-19 Manual that summarizes them.

We hereby thank the work of the EHS Team, the factory leadership and supporting organisation, the Energetics Team and the Safety Committee that all contributed to another success of Tungsram.

Tungsram Luminaries in Soil-Less Agriculture

Modern agriculture, forestry, and other land uses are accountable for 25% of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide, according to FAO data. Agriculture is highly reliant on the use of artificial chemicals to produce food, which makes the sector highly polluting. A novel farming method called aquaponics aims to reduce this environmental burden and Tungsram has teamed up with InGreen, an aquaponics farming venture in the Czech Republic in a bid to serve sustainability and food security.

Put in the simplest terms, aquaponics is the cultivation of plants and aquatic animals in a recirculating environment. Based on a cooperation between plants and fish, the term originates from the word aquaculture (meaning the growing of fish in a closed environment) and hydroponics (the growing of plants usually in a soil-less environment). The key benefits of soil-less agriculture are numerous, including the decreased presence of soil-borne diseases and pathogens; improved growing conditions that can be manipulated to meet optimal plant requirements leading to increased yields; increased water- and fertilizer-use efficiency; and the possibility to develop agriculture where suitable land is not available.

The magic of aquaponics is that these systems convert fish waste to plant nutrition, which makes it an environmentally friendly food-growing method without the need to discard water, filtrate or add chemical fertilizers.

Czech pioneers

In Green is a recently established farming venture in the city of Kelčany (south Moravia, Czechia) that specializes in aquaponics. The two young entrepreneurs behind InGreen, Michal Tesařík and David Rakušan are as excited about the possibilities offered by this farming method as they are concerned about the future of the planet.

“This type of farming combines IT skills with agricultural acumen and allows us to use 90 percent less water than traditional farming, no chemicals and pesticides,”

Michal Tesařík.

Being the only company to combine aquaponics with vertical farming in the Czech Republic, In Green grows over 1,000 pieces of leafy vegetables per month on an area of 6 square meters. They specialize in leafy greens with a special focus on lettuce and various herbs. As InGreen plans to significantly boost their production area in the short term and set up an automated farm, the company set out to find a lighting expert last year. “It’s very difficult to find a good lighting supplier as customers have an immensely wide range of providers to choose from. We tried many companies and compared their products, and found that Tungsram was the best,” says David Rakušan. The Budapest-based company’s flexibility to adjust its lamps to customer needs, the efficiency and high quality of its products, as well as the seamless technical support provided to clients were the decisive arguments in favor of Tungrsam.

Tailor-made lighting design

The cooperation with Tungsram started in June 2020 when the two sides commenced talks about the technical setup, crop definition, spectrum and light intensity requirements. Following several rounds of clarification Tungsram came up with a final lighting design, tailored to the specific needs of the customer. In Green purchased 600 fixed-spectrum Tungsram light bars that were set up on a 350-square meter cultivation area growing lettuce. The lamps are instrumental in helping plants reach a certain, pre-determined weight, shape, taste in a shorter period of time. InGreen has 14 harvesting cycles a year and Tungsram luminaries play a key role in ensuring that the compactness of the plants meets the company’s criteria and that they reach the target weight within a sufficient number of days.

The Budapest-based company also supplied experimental lamps with variable spectrum and lighting recipes to InGreen for the purpose of conducting laboratory research on different lettuce variants and other leafy greens. The research will aid their plans to increase the production area and expand their portfolio of products. 

“We have big plans with Tungsram for the future,”

Michal Tesařík says.