“Sun and ash”. Lanzarote crop trick


The Vegacosta eco-estate in Tinajo has 120,000 m2 of sustainable ash-based crops, "a basis that helps us give life to a range of unique products".

Toño Morales welcomed Worldcanic congress-goers by showing them his Vegacosta eco-estate in Tinajo, 120,000 m2 macro-complex he wants to turn into "an interpretation centre on the island of Lanzarote". At the moment it is a complex of buildings and plots of land for growing vegetables and tubers, along the lines of the island's traditional agriculture, but "adding in some technology to help us out". This includes, on a desert-like island such as Lanzarote, the drip irrigation technique, "even if it's only by way of a gesture, because a lot of water would blacken the product".

According to Morales, the trick behind the virtues of his product is the volcanic earth where it is grown directly. By adding manure to the earth, “we make use of the ash to grow crops, because it provides the vitality the product needs to develop". In addition to organoleptic qualities, the ash has another virtue: “It doesn't need to be renewed. We just turn it a little, and that's that. It's our treasure”. The entire complex is covered by windshields to protect it against the trade winds. “We need them. They're also part of what Lanzarote is”.

Vegacosta uses this system to produce kilos of fresh produce (sweet potatoes, "papa" potatoes, spring onions, figs, lettuce ...) which it does not sell. “We keep all the produce for the restaurant in the complex and La Piscina, the restaurant at the La Santa Club in Tinajo-La Santa where Morales has been managing the gastronomy for decades. The La Santa Club is the largest complex used for training and perfecting sports in Lanzarote, and perhaps the largest in the Canary Islands too.

For the time being, production is reserved for these two concepts, but Morales wants to open a sampling market shortly at Vegacosta “to enable customers to take any surplus production home, or try it in situ with one of the island's fine wines, for example". The idea is to round off a local agriculture experience. So, for example, they have come up with a project to create a seed nursery, "to close the circle and make everything 100% sustainable". 





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