Futurplant underscores the increasing variety range on the market and the stabilisation of production after two years of expansion
The broccoli market is diversifying. “Previously, a single company dominated the sector and now it is easy to see between 7 and 8 varieties at the same time from 4 or 5 different companies. The amount of varieties has increased by 200%,” states Miguel Ángel López, manager of Futurplant. The company’s seedbeds produce around 160-180 million plants a year, with 60 million of brassicas (mainly broccoli, with 55 million), which are mainly marketed in the Bajo Gaudalentín area during the winter campaign and then for crops in high regions for the summer cycle and the Spanish market. The rest of products making up the company’s portfolio are melons, watermelons, leafy plants and other minority crops such as aubergines.
After two “quite good” years, where the demand for broccoli plants increased by 20-25%, this year the orders have stabilised. The area where a rising trend may be seen is in specialities such as Bimi, although as he recalls, it is a product with a regulated offer. “The sector surprises me every year. When you think that it is not going to grow any more, it does it again.”
The company from Lorca slowly came into being in 2010 and became fully operational in 2013. After a heavy snowfall that “put them under serious pressure” as it destroyed a complete greenhouse in 2017, the company recovered and it currently has 6 hectares of greenhouse crops and another two of installations for offices and warehouses.
At Futurplant, their personalised dealings with their clients make them stand out, offering a specialised service that seeks the best for the plants. “The most difficult area in nursery seedbeds is constancy. The plants require all your care and attention 365 days a year.”
They have two machines designed to disinfect the irrigation water, which they use on each water input to prevent problems with fungi and bacteria both on the plants and on the materials, and they have other devices to control the temperature and the humidity, etc. All of which is aimed at obtaining the top quality of the plants, which is subsequently passed on to the crops.