November 2, 2023

Added value for experienced growers and beginners

The essence of PlantBalance? More insight, less risk, better harvest. Many growers are already using the PlantBalance dashboard. How do they experience its use? And how does PlantBalance handle their feedback? We asked Bart van Calenberge, customer manager at Bayer’s PlantBalance.

Optimal data utilization
Bart has been working at Bayer Vegetable Seeds for a year now and is relatively new to the PlantBalance team. “Before joining here, I was involved in practical research in tomato and pepper cultivation for many years. I contributed to research on diseases, pests, and energy consumption, among other things. Located in Belgium I now use my knowledge and experience to contribute to the further optimization of PlantBalance,” Bart explains.

A valuable supporting tool
Bart noticed the shift towards data-driven cultivation several years ago. “This shift was driven both by technological advancements and the desires of growers. PlantBalance aligns perfectly with this trend. I truly see PlantBalance as a supporting tool that provides growers with insights into the impact of certain decisions on their cultivation. It empowers the grower to eliminate even the smallest errors in the management process. The result: maximum cultivation optimization.”

For experienced growers and beginners
The tool adds significant value to a broad group of growers, according to Bart. “Beginners can tap into an unprecedented amount of knowledge through the dashboard, and experienced growers can gain maximum control over their cultivation decisions using PlantBalance. Moreover, the tool is highly valuable for growers starting with a new variety. All the knowledge that PlantBalance possesses is available in the dashboard, ready for growers to use.” Bart also sees that the dashboard benefits not only single-location growers but also those with multiple locations. “With PlantBalance, the grower always has an overview of their entire cultivation, even if it’s spread across multiple locations.”

Maximum cultivation optimization
In his discussions with his customers Bart notes that growers highly appreciate the dashboard. “These are tomato growers in France, Belgium, and the Netherlands, most of whom have been using PlantBalance for a long time. One significant advantage of PlantBalance is that it supports both long-term planning and short-term decisions. Daily cultivation decisions have a significant impact on the outcome. Growers tell me that their green thumbs, combined with the data-driven support from PlantBalance, truly lead to maximum cultivation optimization. During our meetings, we discuss, for example, the growth impact of a cultivation strategy set by the grower. By quantifying this growth, we can guide growers in adjusting their chosen strategy if necessary.”

Continuously evolving
With the achieved successes in mind, the PlantBalance team continues to work on further developing the dashboard. Bart outlines the plans: “Currently, we offer four functionalities, and we are expanding them. We are working on improving the plan, that can be generated within 30 seconds, so that it automatically includes the actual outdoor radiation on your specific location. In this way, your plan stays up to date, everyday,  throughout the entire growing season. We also focus on expanding notifications that alert the grower to deviations in the glasshouse, allowing the grower to act more precisely based on the available data. Additionally, we are constantly developing new functionalities, new and improved features will be announced in future newsletters. If you do not receive them yet, sign-up here

Would you like to learn more about the possibilities of PlantBalance following this interview? Bart invites you to contact him at or +32 (0)4 78 68 21 22.