Growers taken on visit to Botanicoir factory in Sri Lanka

Article taken from the Horticulture Week

Horticultural coir supplier Botanicoir’s directors Samantha and Kalum Balasuriya recently took key soft-fruit customers to visit the factory in Sri Lanka to see the coir-producing process from start to finish.

Among the customers was Eric Drummond, whose Herefordshire farm is switching to tabletop strawberry production using Botanicoir’s strawberry growbags.  “We’re doing 30 acres this year, and 30 acres next, and it’s been very effective,” he said.

“We’ve definitely noticed the difference and using Botanicoir’s growbags offers an added advantage in that they’re both environmentally friendly and sustainable.  In the past we’ve focused on growing our strawberries in the ground and using soil sterilisers, but this method offers a much more sustainable option.”

He said of the trip:  “It was fascinating to see the entire process from the raw coconut husk through to the bagged coir.  I was very impressed with the way that Botanicoir looks after its employees.  Health and safety plus employee welfare come high on their list, a key point that’s also very important to us.”

Also on the tour was Andy Roe, grower manager at tomato grower Flavourfresh.  “We’re suppliers to M&S and part of our commitment to them is to make sure we’re using environmentally sound products that are ethical and sustainable, so I was keen to see where our growbags come from,” he said.

Earlier this year Botanicoir completed the installation of a state-of-the-art waste water treatment plant at the factory that is said is the first of its kind on the island.

 

29 May 2015

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