Controlled environment agriculture (CEA) has become an increasingly popular way to grow crops in a variety of indoor settings—especially vertical growing operations. This type of farming provides the perfect environment for plants, allowing growers to maximize the number of crops they can produce in areas where it would normally be impossible to grow with open-field agriculture. CEA is a part of the solution to the problem of food insecurity, allowing producers to grow food around the world within urban centers or areas that are traditionally inhospitable to food crops.

Regardless of the specific needs of a particular CEA operation, EPM has the perfect solution. EPM products feature insecticide and miticide, and plant washes and water cleansers specially designed to remove biofilm and clean dead root matter within grow media and irrigation systems. Discover how to use different EPM products below—or get in touch for custom EPM solutions designed for your facility's unique needs.

Insect Control in Controlled Environment Agriculture and Vertical Farming

Insect control in controlled environment agriculture (CEA) and vertical farming presents many unique challenges due to the closed nature of the growing environment. Because there is no natural wind or rain to help minimize pest problems, growers must rely on other methods to control insect populations. Common approaches include using physical barriers such as screens and sticky mats, utilizing beneficial insects—and of course, relying on natural,  indoor insecticides like Protection Plus®.

EPM’s Protection Plus® delivers an industry-high kill rate in a formula that is free of Proposition 65 ingredients along with more than 400 forbidden ingredients. It’s an oil-free product that won’t cause biofilm buildup that can interfere with plant growth.

Eliminating Diseases in Controlled Environments

The challenge of controlling and preventing plant diseases in controlled environment agriculture (CEA) and vertical farming is a complex one. While the closed nature of these systems provides advantages such as minimized pest pressure, it also creates unique problems like limited airflow and higher disease pressure due to high humidity levels. Disease prevention is especially difficult because most CEA systems lack the natural air currents and weather patterns that help to regulate pests and diseases in outdoor systems.

Improve Plant Health and Prevent Diseases with Cleansers

CEA and vertical farming requires more than just pest and disease management. Cleanliness and food safety are top priorities—doubly so with many producers relying on complex irrigation systems for hydroponics and aquaponics.

Cleansers really shine as a method to improve plant health and prevent disease. EPM’s Clear Zona® is designed to clear irrigation lines and systems of algae, biofilm, mineral salts, and organic root matter, all of which can lead to disease and health problems when left to build up. Clear Zona® also removes buildup from root systems--and that leads to healthy, accelerated growth by allowing plants to uptake nutrients and water to their fullest. In CEA systems that include aquaponics, you can use Clear Zona® to prevent slime development. It's a safe solution that will not harm fish.