GreenCoop, the Slovak tomatoes grown with green energy

Domovská stránka / Greencoop, The Slovak Tomatoes Grown With Green Energy

Zsolt Bindics started his business activities early during his studies of business management back in 2003. Within 10 years he and his co-workers successfully established the biggest greenhouse farm in Slovakia.

"It is not only the environment protection that we care about. We are also proud of the social aspect of our production. Our agricultural cooperative employs more than 300 people from the region where our greenhouses are located”, highlights Zsolt Bindics."

Industrially produced tomatoes are grown in greenhouses which burn natural gas, produce electricity, enlighten the tomatoes artificially and use the generated energy to heat the glasshouses. GreenCoop tomatoes, however, are grown in greenhouses heated by geothermal power. No chemicals are used – the focus lies on methods such as energy curtains, drip irrigation systems, recycling of plant nutrients and biological plant protection. Thus, “Happy tomatoes of Rye Island” can be offered to customers throughout the year.

The GreenCoop agricultural cooperative unites five farms on Rye Island, located in the Bratislava region. All the members are growing vegetables in modern greenhouses heated by the energy recovered from six geothermal wells on a total area of 20 hectares. GreenCoop is the first and the biggest organization producing vegetables in Slovakia, annually growing more than 10 million kilograms of high-quality home-grown tomatoes. GreenCoops plans are, to expand the activities of this local cooperative ‒ so far operating only in Southern Slovakia ‒ across the borders.

"GreenCoop turned to us in the middle of the financial crisis and asked for money to build six hectares of glasshouses. We were in doubt whether there is demand for ‘green’ tomatoes. But, the guys could convince us that they knew what they were talking about. We granted the loan and even enlarged our cooperation in the years to come“, adds Stanislav Plevák, head of the regional Corporate Centre at Slovenská sporiteľňa.