For us at ONDO, happy customers are the best advertisement money can’t buy. And a happy customer who extends his ONDO automation for a third year on end is a recognition that we are truly proud of!
The berry farm Otbrani in Popovo, Bulgaria is one of the first customers who trusted ONDO to automate the precise irrigation and fertigation in their farm. Otbrani is also one of our most renowned customers since their produce of fresh strawberries, raspberries, blackberries and blueberries can be found in the biggest supermarkets in the country, as well as abroad. And since recently, the farm has also launched its own label of fruit wine – “Noblewine Otbrani”.
We started work with this farm in the summer of 2020. Otbrani were then actively looking for a solution for irrigation and fertigation automation that would allow them to optimize the water and fertilizer consumed, in view of the continuous expansion of the arable land and the unpredictable, often scarce rain quantity observed throughout the previous years.
It is quite usual for the big farms to approach new technology solutions with caution; they usually prefer to have the opportunity to test out the new technology on part of their farm. They also have high expectations towards the smooth work of any technology solution and are looking for clear proofs of the benefits that can reap by using that solution.
For ONDO’s team the opportunity to have the technology tested before adoption is also a feasible option, since it allows the customer to see for themselves the results and benefits from ONDO automation. Thus in year 2020 we put the beginning of our collaboration with Otbrani, via a pilot project aimed at automating the precise irrigation and fertigation for 20 ha of berries, via a cable-based automation install and a new fertigation system.
The results achieved throughout the first year were impressive, with water savings of 30%, fertilizer savings of 20%, increased crop yield and much faster time for reaction to infrastructure issues. Hence, in 2021 Otbrani decided to proceed with stage 2 of the automation, by setting up fully wireless irrigation and fertigation automation with ONDO, for 30 ha of their farming land. The wireless automation brought up several challenges caused by the specifics of the farming terrain, but thanks to the close collaboration between ONDO and Otbrani’s team, those were successfully resolved in a timely manner.
Later in 2021 the farm also decided to upgrade and extend their initial, cable-based automation. We added a new fertigation system to it and added more fields to this automation, making it a hybrid one – i.e having cable-based and wireless automation managed by the same controller. Thus, at the end of 2021 the farm was already automating the irrigation and fertigation for a big part of their farming land.
And, this year we are happy to announce that we are already working on the 3rd stage of our collaboration with Otbrani, enabling automation for another 10 ha of their farming land!
There are several key factors for this successful collaboration between ONDO and Otbrani:
- The significant results achieved by Otbrani in the very first year thanks to ONDO automation, which clearly showed them that they can achieve fast ROI and continue reaping benefits – resource savings and increased yield – in the long run
- The functionality of ONDO, allowing monitoring and control of the EC and PH of the irrigation water – this factor alone has a significant contribution to the improved quality, quantity and durability of the berry produce
- The obvious reduction in human resources needed for the management and control of the irrigation and fertigation processes – a result that was particularly appreciated in the times of the coronavirus crisis
- The fast response of ONDO’s team to any challenges arising from the farm specifics
- The possibility to expand the ONDO installation in a flexible and economically efficient manner, in line with the investment capabilities of the owner.
We are glad that in the face of ONDO, Otbrani found a reliable and long-term technology partner! We are also thankful that the active collaboration between our two companies enabled ONDO to respond to our customer’s automation needs in a truly efficient manner.
We are looking forward to our continued cooperation with Otbrani and wish them success!