As you all know, water is a fundamental, scarce and strategic resource for sustainable development at all levels, economic, social or environmental.
As far as agriculture is concerned, water is an essential resource for the maintenance of crops and ecosystems and is particularly related to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, specifically number 13 “Combating climate change” and SDG 15 “Life of terrestrial ecosystems”.
Water management is therefore a major challenge for the new olive growing sector, a challenge that will rise as the effects of climate change become increasingly noticeable.
At Castillo de Canena we are constantly implementing specific measures and practices to continue optimising and making efficient and responsible use of water in our olive groves:
- We have the entire estate sectorised by homogeneous cultivation plots (variety, altitude, slope) and we monitor the physiology of the olive tree by means of monitoring stations. The work carried out by the humidity sensors that allow us to know the state of the humid bulb in the land depending on the characteristics of the ground (for this purpose we carry out calicatas and periodic land analyses) and the trunk dendrometers that allow us to know that the water applied to the earth is being assimilated by the leaf mass and to evaluate the evaporation rates.
- Monitoring is carried out through a remote control system that allows us to know and operate in real time in each irrigation sector, providing exhaustive information on the water needs of the plantation at all times, with the possibility of planning the necessary water more exactly and so avoiding both water stress and excess irrigation. In this way we avoid human error.
- All this, together with the installation of localised drop irrigation (the most efficient system), allows us to apply water resources with a high degree of homogeneity, to dose the water and to apply it in small quantities so that there are no runoff losses of this scarce element.
- We have the most advanced technology thanks to climatic stations installed in different areas of the estate, which allow us to know the microclimate, evapotranspiration, rainfall values, temperature and solar radiation for our irrigation planning in each Pago. These parameters directly affect our olive groves’ water requirements. Knowledge of these parameters makes it easier for us to draw up a water balance to know, together with the satellite images, the water condition of the plant.
But that’s not all!
We maintain complete vegetal covers to ensure that all rainwater remains stored in our lands and prevent erosion, and we take care of the aquifers by using only organic nutrients. In addition, something fundamental for us is that we are actively committed with innovation, technology and training of our human teams to increase the efficiency of all our processes, and thus continuously evaluate and mitigate excess consumption of any input, including water itself as the most important of them. In the same way, we select suppliers who are responsible and committed to environmental sustainability.
In addition, since 2013 we have been calculating our Water Footprint year after year, certified by DNV, committing to and effectively complying with the progressive reduction of water use. In this way, we have also been certified by Forética’s SGE 21 standard, which is based on the ONU’s SDGs.