TEFA is a fibrous material, extracted from maize straw. It is very similar to peat in terms of structure and specifications. Professional growers and hobby gardeners appreciate the excellent qualities of TEFA: high air and water pore volume, structural stability, low salt content and hygenic properties.
In Switzerland, TEFA is certified for organic production. Detailed specifications and application recommendations are given in the product datasheet.
Download : Datasheet TEFA
TEFA has been compared to peat, coco-products, wood fibres and other substrate components in a detailed life cycle analysis (LCA). This study had been commissioned by the Swiss branch organisation JardinSuisse and performed by the University of applid sciences Wädenswil (Zurich).
The study reports a superior performance of TEFA in terms of CO2-emissions, transport requirements and overall ecological impacts. Compared to the extraction and consumption of peat, TEFA reduces CO2-emissions 85-90%. Considering the European market of 30 mio m3 annually, TEFA represents a potential CO2-reduction of around 6,5 mio t per year. Detailed information for this study is available on request.
Peat is a limited fossil ressource. Today, Baltic countries are the main suppliers of peat to European markets; resulting in the annual transport of 30 mio m3 of peat through Poland and Germany. The equivalent of about 1’500 truck loads every day.
The extraction and consumption of peat leads to the widespread destruction of rare and ecologically valuable moorland. In addition, every cubic metre of extracted peat results in the emission of 250 kg CO2. For these reasons, it is increasingly regulated by law:
- In Switzerland, peat exploitation is prohibited since 1987. The Federal Council also proposed a mid-term ban of peat in the year 2010.
- The UK will ban the consumption of peat as of 2020 (for applications in hobby gardening) and 2025 (for professional horticultural production).
The raw material for production of TEFA (maize straw) is widely available within the key product markets.