Jay operates a 10 hectare hydroponic tunnel site producing strawberries, raspberries and blackberries in the Waikato. Water is imperative to their operation.
What was the problem you were trying to solve?
“I’ve been doing this for about 10 years and my father for about 30. And the biggest thing is that there’s many ways to capture water. Whether it be straight from the bore into the field, or out of a pond into a steel or poly tank. But cost and cleanliness of the water were the two main factors. We were heading down the pond track but you had to get a consent and you know there’s so much extra stuff you have to do in the process. We were going to go the steel tank route but they were overly expensive and then we were going to go poly tanks but we’d need hundreds of the things to actually make it work and that wasn’t going to be cost effective.”
What made you choose a Flexi Tanks?
“I think Anton had popped into the farm at Dads one day and I was there and we had a chat. Anton explained the benefits to it and then from there I didn’t even think twice so. It’s just the most secure way of getting water and pretty much the most cost effective too. Ponds probably slightly cheaper but the amount of consents and processes to go through it was not worth it. So I recommend it to everyone just because it's the cleanest water that I’ve grown with in my years of growing and I’ve had my best season of production.”
How do you compare Flexi Tanks with other water storage options?
“It came down to security of water, the cost was really effective, especially per square cube of water, and probably the most cost effective out of all the alternatives minus the pond. But to be honest the cleanliness of the water is the key benefit because obviously our plants are solely dependant on clean water and if there’s something wrong with it, you know duck poo in it or if we get weed in it then we’ve got issues.”
“Having gone through the whole extent with top of the line tunnels, top of the line irrigation systems, top of the line buildings and it was just like, well why just chuck a pond in. It’s kind of like putting second hand tyres on a BMW - it just made no sense. It’s also very appealing to people, they come in look at the site and wow you know it’s clean and are like far, that’s impressive. It just adds to the mystique of the site.”