Saving Water is possible – on World Water Day, a reflection on our commitment to saving water in agriculture

Water saving in agriculture is very topical and represents one of the most difficult challenges for modern agriculture, as this sector is one of the main consumers of water. Suffice it to say that on average, agriculture accounts for 70% of global freshwater use and according to FAO data, in 2050 it will be necessary to produce up to 60% more food to meet the needs of the growing world population.

For this reason, the United Nations Organization has established World Water Day, which is celebrated today 22 March as every year. The aim of this day is to raise awareness among the public and governments on the issue of sustainable management of water resources.

The Arrigoni Group is committed to making a difference in resource management in agriculture, and we know the complexity and importance of these challenges. As a company, we have always had the goal of producing textile materials of the highest quality, but recently we have addressed with greater attention the issue of water saving in agriculture, deciding that the time had come to make our contribution also in this field.

As Arrigoni Group, dealing with the design and manufacture of agrotextiles for the primary sector, we have successfully tested in the field a new range of thermo-reflective protective screens called Prisma®. Thanks to their innovative technology, this range of agrotextiles allows to optimize the diffusion of light and to control the temperature, reducing water consumption by up to more than 40% compared to production in the open field.

This innovation is particularly important in this time of great emergency, as irrigation plays a fundamental role in food production. Arrigoni wants to contribute to research to improve the productivity of agriculture and make it less harmful to the environment. According to FAO, the planet contains, yes, about 1,400 million km3 of water, but only 0.003% of this amount can be used for drinking, hygiene, agriculture and industry. In addition, not all this water is accessible, since part of it flows into remote rivers during seasonal flooding.

Finally, over the past hundred years, water consumption has grown almost twice as much as population growth. FAO predicts that irrigated food production will increase by more than 50 percent by 2050, but the amount of water set aside for agriculture can only increase by 10 percent, provided irrigation practices are improved and yields increase.

In this context, our innovations, the Advanced Agrotextiles by Arrigoni, come into play . In intensive agriculture it is now necessary to adopt water-saving techniques. Textile screens can be simple and effective agricultural tools to increase the efficiency of water use, depending on their structure, color and level of shading. They transmit sunlight in a specific band of wavelengths, increase the efficiency of radiation use, influence the morphology and physiology of plants, can also be a factor in improving flowering and growth, as well as the performance and quality of fruits.

But that’s just the beginning. We started to study how our products could contribute to water saving in agriculture. Our extensive field research continues to provide encouraging results, and we work shoulder to shoulder with farmers and institutions to develop new materials that can help reduce water consumption for irrigation.

In conclusion, it is now clear that climate change and the growing demand for food by the world’s population are putting more and more pressure on available water resources. In addition, intensive and unsustainable agriculture can lead to contamination of water resources and their depletion.

For this reason, it is essential to promote sustainable agricultural practices that save water and use it more efficiently. For example, the use of drip irrigation systems, the choice of crops that are more resistant to drought and the use of cultivation techniques that favor moisture conservation, such as agrotextiles.

Water saving in agriculture is an issue that requires a concrete commitment from all those involved. World Water Day reminds us of the importance of sustainable water management and invites us to do our part to contribute to a more sustainable and equitable future.