By: International Water &Irrigation (2011)
Jaen in Spain has the largest area of olive production in the world.
Two challenges have faced farmers in this area: scarcity of water and the demand for new technological solutions in order to increase productivity.
Most of the orchards are planted with large spacing between the trees, reaching 10 m X 10 m.
The traditional methods of weed control and orchard maintenance demand the ability to cross cultivate.
For years NaanDanJain has been providing irrigation solutions to the challenges in the Jaen area.
Micro-jets were provided in the 1980s, while button drippers came later. In the recent years, the popularity of subsurface drip irrigation has increased.
This type of irrigation satisfies local needs and takes advantage of the existing resources. In 2010 A new addition was made to the well-established AmnonDrip product line.
The new anti-siphon model is especially designed for sub-surface installations, with its sand-suction prevention mechanism and root intrusion barrier. ,Since its introduction, it has become a leading product in this market.
Hundreds of hectares have been installed with AmnonDrip and plans are being made to install it in many more over the next few years.
The common installation is based on AmnonDrip PC AS 16 mm, with a dripper flow rate of 1.6 or 2.2 l/h and dripper spacing of 75-100 cm.
The lateral is placed between the tree rows at a depth of 30-40 cm.
The subsurface installation allows growers to continue their traditional way of cultivation and enjoy high efficiency of water use.
The development of weeds, usually related to surface irrigation, is prevented, as is soil erosion, which used to be caused by the old method of flood irrigation.
One of the unique features of Spanish irrigation is the “irrigation community”. These groups of growers unite in order to share the costs and management of the regional irrigation system.
The well-established association of Pozo Alcon has over 5,000 members and has been active for over 120 years.
During March 2011 the community reached an agreement with NaanDanJain Iberica and its associates in the district Agrisan Irrigation for the installation of AmnonDrip PC AS driplines.
This is a very complicated project consisting of thousands of small plots, each one of which will receive water on demand. The new system will allow efficient irrigation and fertigation, ensuring an increase in water use efficiency and reduction in manual labor.
NaanDanJain and Agrisan Irrigation will continue with this project in the future, constantly accompanying the growers of this community and providing them with technical training and support.