NIAB is the UK’s fastest-growing crop science organisation. The company was founded in 1919 and has a longstanding international reputation for expertise in plant varieties and seeds. Their scientific capabilities span the crop improvement pipeline; from underpinning research required to develop higher-yielding, more climate-resilient crops through to the extensive trials data, agronomy expertise and the advice needed to ensure these advances are transferred effectively onto the farm.
Wheat is a vital commercial crop and essential calorie source in the UK and globally. As the global population increases towards 10 billion people, with the most increased consumption expected in developing countries, the world needs to produce 60% more wheat by 2050 to meet this global demand. NIAB is conducting research using speed breeding techniques under LED grow lights to find the plants that will have the most resistance to diseases and pests, and so be able to produce high yields with less pesticide usage.
NIAB’s facility is quite unique in that they grow a range of crops under glass so cannot realistically have multiple units with a range of spectrums throughout. Two years ago, they trialled a like-for-like spectrum replacement for the HPS but since meeting INDO at an LED lighting workshop event which their colleagues laid on in 2019, decided to trial the ELEMENT.
Initially, they were a little sceptical having not heard of us before and the fact that, at that time, we were relatively new to the marketplace. But having heard good things from peers within the industry and since seeing the product, understanding the unique benefits that Direct Drive offers and working with the team at INDO, they’ve been really impressed!
When I first saw the element I was impressed with the size and the lack of moving parts and huge running gear. As a result of using the INDO ELEMENT, we’ve seen consistent plant performance and a 4-week improvement in plant life cycling, from 14 weeks down to around 10/ 11 weeks. This compares favourably with our previous LED grow light system, which is generally regarded as the industry standard for research breeding applications.
The INDO ELEMENT has helped NIAB achieve its research objectives as well as significant cost and energy savings. In conjunction with the easy mounting, IP66 rating and simple operating system this has meant the product has proved itself on all fronts. We are continuing to work with the team to ensure their further research goals can be met with the right lighting configuration.