As the season comes to a close…

As the season comes to a close…

The AgroSpeCom team is working day and night, and even on weekends to guarantee a precision fumigation job for each client. This past weekend, for example, the fumigation team worked into the night to remove Therminate heaters from a mill after a heat treatment. As the warm season ends, we say a big BRAVO to all our fumigators for making this season a...
Control Union involved in improving Hygiene in Refugee Camps

Control Union involved in improving Hygiene in Refugee Camps

Recently AgroSpeCom / Control Union Greece applied our HEAT TREATMENT technique in a new and unique, but simultaneously miserable, environment; a temporary residency for refugees in Northern Greece. More then 1,5 million refugees crossed into Europe since the beginning of 2015 due to major crises situations in for example Libya and especially Syria. Although there are huge initiatives undertaken to cope with this influx, and thousands of professionals and volunteers work hard every day to arrange proper living situations for these displaced people, actual situations in temporary residencies or refugee camps are often extremely poor. Unfortunately (much too) many people packed in one place, combined with extremely low hygiene possibilities, is an ideal situation for the development of major pest populations. Consequently, residents often suffer from extreme discomfort from mites, flee and bed bugs. As you may image, traditional pest control methods such as fogging or spraying with (toxic) contact insecticides are not an option in these specific situations, but applying HEAT is. Residents only have to be replaced for up to approximately 10 hours, while their belongings and set up can remain in place and the HEAT does its work and kills all mentioned pests in all stages by reaching over 50C. In this case, the treated locations were small, but the solution is applicable in (much) bigger locations also. CU Greece offered a major discount as per its commercial tariff so that the client, a local NGO, was able to help the people they help so selflessly.     Photo 1: An electrical heater placed inside a room.               Photo 2:...
Heat Treatment: Precision Fumigation with Benefits

Heat Treatment: Precision Fumigation with Benefits

Vasilis Sotiroudas, Food Scientist, Heat Treatment specialist Thessaloniki, Greece info@agrospecom.gr   End of an era Use of Methyl Bromide (MeBr) has been banned in most developed countries since 2007. From January 1st 2015, it is not available anywhere as a fumigant for flour mills and other industries. Several fumigation alternatives have been tried around the world with heat treatment being one of them. But how good are these compared to good old MeBr? Can such alternatives be used for precise fumigation, i.e. a tightly controlled and monitored fumigation process? Methyl Bromide has been a good fumigant, but not excellent since the main disadvantage of gas fumigants is that they need airtight buildings. And in the real world, very few buildings are made airtight or can become airtight with proper sealing work. The majority of buildings will never hold the gas, especially on a windy day or when there are significant temperature differences between day and night.     The Heat Advantage Heat treatment has been practiced worldwide for a few years and is by now deemed a very effective replacement of MeBr for structural fumigation. Insects die at temperatures above 50oC because the proteins in their bodies coagulate, their salt equilibrium becomes damaged and they dry out. All insect stages are affected and no resistance to heat has been observed in the lab or in the field. Electricity, gas, petrol and steam can be used to generate heat for insect extermination. In our work, we have found out that each type of heater has its plusses and minuses. Electrical heaters (Photo 1) are easy to use, easy to handle...

AgroSpeCom receives grant for innovative heat treatment application

AgroSpeCom has received a research grant from ΚτΠ Α.Ε., and the ICT4Growth programme, to develop innovative technology for Heat Treatment (HT – also known as Thermal Remediation) applications. AgroSpeCom has been pioneering HT, which is a modern, green and environment-friendly method for pest control. The ENTTOSOFT project is pursuing a cloud/mobile enabled system for remotely monitoring HT applications in real-time. The outcome of the project which launched in 2014, will be a unique software and hardware toolset that will significantly enhance the efficiency, safety and accuracy of HT, while driving down energy consumption and related costs. The project has already reached the field trials phase and is already demonstrating exceptional results. In the ENTTOSOFT project, AgroSpeCom is partnering with Centaur Technologies – a high-tech company in Greece developing industrial Internet-of-Things solutions – and the  University of Thessaly, Department of Agriculture, Crop Production and Rural...