INTRODUCTION TO AGRO TEXTILES

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Food, clothing and shelter are the three basic needs of the human being. The human being started using the fibers as human clothing from the Old Stone Age; later on textiles come up with the large areas of applications mainly known as industrial textiles. An important application of the textiles in agriculture is in the protection against extreme climatic conditions .Textiles used in Agriculture are termed as AGRO-TEXTILES. Agriculture is the largest industry in the world. Agriculture is the backbone of our country; went the saying so far. But do you know that textile can be the backbone of agriculture? Agriculture, forestry, horticulture, floriculture, fishing segments, landscape gardening, animal husbandry, aquaculture & agro-engineering all these sectors combined together are popularly called as Agro-tech sector. Agro textiles are the application of textile materials in those sectors. It is a very much important segment of Technical Textile .Agro-textiles are textiles used for their functional benefits in the agricultural field.

With the continuous increase in population worldwide stress on agricultural crop production has increased. Hence it is necessary to increase the yield and quality of agro-products within the space and water constraints we are faced with today. But it is not possible to meet this increased demand completely with traditional methods such as use of pesticides and herbicides. The agriculture and horticulture industries have realized the need to pursue various technologies to get higher overall yield and better quality agro-products. The essential properties required in agro textiles are strength, elongation, stiffness, resistance to sunlight and resistance to toxic environments. All these properties help with the growth and harvesting of crops and other foodstuffs. With growing diseases due to various chemicals in and pollution, due emphasis is laid on organic foods and vegetables today. These are best done with controlled use of water, sunlight and composts duly achieved by use of agro-textiles. Agriculture has been amongst the most primal occupations of the humankind and is still a major industry, globally. The stress on the production of agricultural crops has been increasing substantially with the continuous rise in world population.

Present situation demands high yield and quality of agro-products in order to meet this rising need of population with limited land resource. However, the traditional way using pesticides and herbicides to achieve this stringent need is difficult. Moreover these methods are expensive and have long lasting ecological impact on soil as well as in living beings and agro-products. With increasing environmental awareness and specified knowledge of various interdisciplinary technologies, considerable attention has been given on non-conventional technical applications like using textile structures in agriculture and horticulture sectors to enhance quality and yield of the agro-products.

Textile structures in various forms are used in shade house, green house and also in open fields to control environmental factors like temperature, water and humidity. Use of agro textiles like sunscreen, bird net, windshield, mulch mat, hail protection net, harvesting net, etc are gaining popularity now-a-days. The Agro textiles sector is one of the forerunners within technical textiles. Agro textiles are textiles used for their functional benefits in the agricultural field. The agriculture and horticulture industries have realized the need to pursue various technologies to get higher overall yield and better quality agro-products.

Technical textiles are defined as; textile materials and products manufactured primarily for their technical and performance properties rather than their aesthetic or decorative characteristics; Technical textiles are reported to be the fastest growing sector of the textile industrial sector and account for almost 19% (10 million tons) of the total world fiber consumption for all textile uses. Agro textiles are one of the forerunners in this growth within technical textiles. Agro textiles are textiles used for their functional benefits in the agricultural field. With the continuous increase in population worldwide stress on agricultural crop production has increased.

Hence it is necessary to increase the yield and quality of agro-products within the space and water constraints we are faced with today. But it is not possible to meet this increased demand completely with traditional methods such as use of pesticides and herbicides. The agriculture and horticulture industries have realized the need to pursue various technologies to get higher overall yield and better quality agro-products. The essential properties required in agro textiles are strength, elongation, stiffness, resistance to sunlight and resistance to toxic environments.

All these properties help with the growth and harvesting of crops and other foodstuffs. With growing diseases due to various chemicals in and pollution, due emphasis is laid on organic foods and vegetables today. These are best done with controlled use of water, sunlight and composts duly achieved by use of agro textiles.