James Hutton Institute joins forces with Crocus Labs to transform light use in plant and crop production

James Hutton Institute and Crocus Labs join forces to establish the efficiency of dynamic light spectra on young plantsLed

Led by the Director of the Hutton’s Advanced Plant Growth Centre, Professor. Derek Stewart; Dr. Gabriela Toledo, Research Group Leader in Plant Photobiology at the Hutton and Evgeny Gubin of Crocus Labs; theresearch is initially focusing on the berry propagation in greenhouse as well as in controlled environment agriculture (CEA).


James Hutton Institute, is one of the leading institutions in the field of argi-food systems and here bring their skills in plant and crop breeding and photobiology to the fore. Crocus Labs is a deep tech startup rooted in the Berlin/Brandenburg region, at the forefront of lighting innovation, offering unparalleled energy efficiency through the integration of proprietary LED chip technology, sophisticated hardware design, and intelligent software. This collaboration will target many areas where light is crucial to crop development, productivity, quality etc and initially the impact of customised light spectrums on increasing plant propagation survival ratio and enhancing the development of young berry plants will be studied.

“Its all about the light. For controlled environment agriculture, light control, encompassing intensity and wavelength recipes at different developmental stages, is crucial if the benefits such as shorter time to harvest, increased productivity and enhanced quality and nutritive value, are to be realised. Crocus Lab’s innovative LED lighting solutions offer all these options and that is why the Advanced Plant Growth Centre, at The James Hutton Institute, are partnering with them and exploring the potential of their lighting and energy management innovations”.

Prof Dr. Derek Stewart, Director at The Advanced Plant Growth Centre

The partnership is set to focus on cutting-edge research aiming to bring best in class industry experience in young plant propagation in Greenhouse and CEA using Crocus Labs’ tunable spectrum & energy efficient lighting solution SIRIUS X.3 model. It is an example of the innovation emerging from the CEA sector that is also impacting significantly on pen field agriculture.

Light is among crucial environmental factors determining the success of the rooting of stem cuttings. Various studies have already identified that modifications of the proportions of Red and Blue colours applied during plant growth and development can generate significant positive results.

“Crocus Labs’ lighting will be fundamental to conduct photobiology research at the James Hutton Institute/APGC. Their highly versatile technology will allow the provision of flexible light environments for research on plant growth and metabolism including the achievement of a balance between yield, production of phytochemicals and minimization of energy inputs, with direct contributions to the development of more sustainable CE agricultural production systems and the diversification of produce.”

Dr Gabriela Toledo, Research Group Leader Plant Photobiology

Selecting the right spectra for the chosen variety can increase the propagation rate and hence commercial productivity. For more info on Crocus Labs propagation trials contact them at info@crocuslabs.com.

About Evgeny Gubin: Evgeny is the Horticulture Research lead at Crocus Labs. Being with the company from its very start, Evgeny is the alumni of Humbolt university holding a degree in Process & Quality management in Agri- and Horticulture. Evgeny oversees the internal light research conducted at Crocus’s farm in the heart of berlin as well as consulting customers on the besting lighting solution for their needs.


About Prof. Derek Stewart: Stewart: Derek is the Director at The Advanced Plant Growth Centre, an ~£30M innovation centre hosted at the James Hutton Institute. There he leads a range of innovative research programs, on multiple food and non-food crops, aimed at translating the scientificdevelopments in Controlled Environment Agriculture through to industrial application.


About Dr. Gabriela Toledo: Gabriela is the Research Group Leader in Plant Photobiology, focussing on plant molecular photobiologist, and she is working on the impact of light on plant growth, development, the metabolism of phytonutrients and chloroplastic metabolism.


About Crocus Labs

Crocus Labs GmbH, a deep tech startup rooted in the Berlin/Brandenburg region, at the forefront of lighting innovation, offering unparalleled energy efficiency through the integration of proprietary LED chip technology, sophisticated hardware design, and intelligent software. Their SiriusX grow light solutions enhance efficiency for indoor farming enterprises by boosting yields and plant quality. They also assist other manufacturers in increasing digitisation, energy efficiency, and implementing novel spectral technology. Crocus labs proprietary nano-LED technology has the ability to generate any visible spectrum, including light that simulates the sun. For more information, please reach out to info@crocuslabs.com