Innovations in the agricultural industry are important for future generations and are enabling
communities all over the world to meet the demand for food. Both in novel and technical ways, plastic designs are helping lead the way in agricultural innovation. Examples include rotomolded beehives, injection molded spray nozzles, and plastic reservoir systems.

Rotomolded Beehive

Bees are integral players in honey production, but they are typically utilized in rural settings rather than urban ones, for practical reasons. However, the use of bees for honey production has the potential to spread to urban areas. PRW reported on a college student that created an intelligent beehive using UV stabilized polythene. This beehive minimizes contact between beekeepers and the bees, while creating a safe environment for bee colonies to produce honey.

The rotomolded beehive has a clear plastic dome for viewing the colony, plastic collection trays and a temperate environment attributable to thin plastic walls. It also has an acoustic monitoring system and sensors that deliver data to a mobile app. The centrifugal process for collecting the honey and simple methods for removing debris or dead bees make life easy for the beekeeper. The intelligent design of the beehive makes the unit viable for urban yards, while keeping the cost of honey production to a minimum. Innovations such as this one can change the way urban dwellers obtain their food.

Injection Molded Spray Nozzles

When it comes to irrigation and the efficient use of water, the quality of plastic spray nozzles is important. The accuracy of the spray, along with amount of water used, impacts crop quality and the money farmers spend on water. Injection molded spray nozzles have high precision thresholds that allow them to irrigate crops with maximum efficiency. Also, plastic nozzles are durable and can stand-up to the elements without rusting. This gives plastic nozzles an edge over metal products or other water spraying mechanisms. Innovative products such as these are making the process of crop watering more efficient and effective than ever.

Plastic Reservoir Systems

The demand for water is likely to increase in the future as the population grows and the need for food rises. As a result, collecting and storing water for use in arid landscapes is becoming more of a necessity, which is where plastic reservoir systems can play a role. These systems typically include collection points for water storage, plastic covers to reduce evaporation, and irrigation pipes. The plastics in these systems help to conserve water and deliver it safely to areas that would not other be able to support crop production.

These systems can be used to collect rain water and deliver it many miles away. What’s more, developing nations looking to increase food production can implement these systems in a cost effective manner. The net result is effective food production at a reasonable cost to both the producer and the consumer. Also of note, the plastics in these systems can be recycled or reused in other projects. This gives farmers a lot of flexibility when they determine their production goals. It also helps to reduce the environmental footprint of farmers over the long term.

As the world’s population continues to climb, so too will the need for innovation in the agricultural sector. The aforementioned designs are examples of how plastic is changing the productive capacities of farms.  Plastic materials can be used as durable, cost-effective solutions that change the way people cultivate food.

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