It’s important for growers to detect problems in their plants as early as possible, before they spread and cause even more damage. PhenoVation from Nijmegen has developed an apparatus that can detect problems in plants much more precisely and more frequently by measuring changes in photosynthesis.

“Many growers rely on experience and gut feeling,” says director of PhenoVation Henk Jalink. “We can monitor in real time when a plant has enough light. This is important because too much light, as well as too little, can be damaging for plants. Through our sensors, growers can intervene at a much earlier stage than normally.”

Additionally, the apparatus from PhenoVation can help growers to achieve much higher production levels, as well as to lower costs. This is because temperature, carbon dioxide and moisture levels can be much more reliably monitored to the needs of the plants.

Oost NL has extended innovation credits to PhenoVation from the subsidy Gelderland For Innovations. This enabled the company to purchase expensive apparatus necessary to field test the apparatus.  Jalink: “We are a startup. Without support from Oost NL we could never have paid for the necessary equipment.”

Investing in startups

Startups may be sitting on potential gold mines through their innovations, but having enough funding to develop them is often a challenge. Oost NL is able to intervene at an early stage to help startups finance their innovations.