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Viluco-agro implements sustainable actions for the responsible management of its production processes
Viluco is the agricultural company of Grupo Lucci, which works by adding value to the primary production of the Argentine countryside. Our activity takes place in the Northwest of the country, on a total of 30,000Ha of our own, distributed in 9 farms located in the provinces of Santiago del Estero, Salta and Tucumán, where soybeans and corn are produced as main crops, and wheat, sorghum , cotton, chickpea and black bean on smaller surfaces.
At Grupo Lucci, we believe that Good Agricultural Practices are a strategic instrument to adequately address the challenges of quantitative and qualitative growth in the demand for agroindustrial products.
Committed to the sustainable and productive development of the region, in Viluco we have been working on the management of a long-term sustainable production system, which implies the implementation of specific actions that promote the balance between productivity, profitability and environmental care. environment.
“Within the activity that we carry out in the different agricultural establishments, we have as horizon to achieve more and more environmentally friendly productions, trying to generate higher quality food and safety for later industrial use or direct consumption,” said Ramiro Aznar, Viluco Primary Production Manager.
Crops at the service of production
In Viluco we focus on looking for solutions to prevent possible problems in the health of the ecosystem, instead of having to solve them, so we decided to implement strategies linked to conservation agriculture.
The cultivation of service, or also called coverage, consists of sowing alternative species, specifically applied to produce eco-systemic services. They are generally species established between two summer crops, which are not grazed, incorporated, or harvested, but remain on the surface as soil protection, releasing nutrients as a result of the biomass degradation process.
“Although they are not income crops, since they are not economically exploited, they offer numerous benefits,” explained Ing. Aznar. They are sown with the objective of protecting the soil against water erosion, reducing its compaction and improving its fertility, stimulating nitrogen fixation and controlling weeds and pests, while also increasing biodiversity in production systems.
In our company we understand that it is a convenient investment, since it contributes to minimizing the environmental impact, provides nutrients to the soil, allows greater and better water storage, and helps regulate soil moisture, reducing the effect of high temperatures or water shortage. It also ensures greater yield on the main crop, and decreases the use of herbicides and the cost they imply.
Campaign 2018-2019 = 28% savings on herbicides
In recent years, selective spray technology has significantly improved efficiency over weed control and fertilizer application. Innovation in cultural tasks today allows us to make economic and environmentally appropriate decisions for the production of our crops.
As resistant and recurrent, weed control during fallow poses the challenge of being efficient, while being sustainable. In this context, in 2018 we have incorporated the Directed Spray System, better known as WEEDIT, whose technology consists of infrared LED sensors that detect chlorophyll fluorescence, allowing a variable, specific and concentrated dosage only on plants.
This system helps us reduce water consumption and product drift, being able to save between 40 and 70% of agrochemicals in each application, thus minimizing the environmental impact and production costs.
Campaign 2018-2019 = -43% / Ha reduction of consumption of agrochemicals
Another tool that we began to use as of the 2019 campaign, is the differential application of fertilizers at a specific site that, from the collection and management of information, allows us to recognize and identify variations in soil type, texture, color and productivity Inside the lots.
According to different analyzes of the soils, and of their fertility variables, maps are made that determine the areas of sufficiency and need for fertilizers, and by which the differential application for each particular area is prescribed, consequently achieving greater efficiency in the use of resources, thanks to the better distribution of the product, the reduction of nutrient losses due to excess application, and cost savings.
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Viluco incorporated the esterification of olein into its oil production process. With this action, biodiesel is generated that contributes to the sustainability of the company.