The main activity of IribovSBW is the tissue culture of plants. Within the laboratory techniques are developed for multiplication of plants under sterile conditions.
Plant or parts of plants are placed on artificial growing media. The growing media contains all supplements needed for growth including plant specific substances to control the type of plant development. Plants are grown in special conditioned rooms where optimal temperature and light intensity can be applied. Most crops can be subcultured every 4-8 weeks. Considering the short growing cycle, tissue culture is an ideal technique in producing huge numbers of plants within a short period of time.
The sterile environment in the laboratory makes it possible to keep plants completely free of diseases, which is a large advantage over growing in the field or in greenhouses.
Currently we have experience with over 450 different species in tissue culture, to which every year some 20 new crops are added.
Apart from multiplication, tissue culture of plants is also used as a tool for breeding purposes. For example by specific rescuing techniques for embryo's or none fertilized gametes. It is also possible to treat plants in a certain phase of the tissue culture period to induce changes in the genetics of the plants.
Via tissue culture techniques basic material is produced for large scale production. The requirement for this type of basic material is high: It must be disease free and identity of material must be guaranteed. Therefore a quality system is used which are also externally certified.
Tissue culture production is very labour intensive. For large scale production labour costs in the Netherlands are too high to be economically feasible. Therefore large scale production is outsourced.