Loxtonia Cider: Conserving 1.7 Million (!) Litres of Water per Hectare in Apple Orchards

Project at Loxtonia farm’s apple orchard

Loxtonia Cider, a family-owned business situated in the Western Cape of South Africa, specializes in producing a diverse range of Apple Ciders from their own orchards. However, the region has been grappling with water scarcity issues in recent years, with agriculture nearly reaching a critical point known as “day Zero,” where water availability becomes extremely limited.


In 2018, SupPlant embarked on a project at Loxtonia farm’s apple orchard, aiming to enhance water use efficiency while sustaining high levels of production. The objective was to explore methods of reducing water consumption while preserving the orchard’s productivity.


SupPlant implemented an advanced system that continuously monitored and documented soil moisture, plant and fruit growth, as well as meteorological conditions. This real-time data empowered Loxtonia Cider to gain profound insights into the impact of irrigation on trees and fruits under varying weather conditions throughout the entire season.

Upon analysis, the grower swiftly realized that excessive irrigation was occurring. By employing smaller, more frequent irrigations, the same level of fruit and tree growth could be achieved, resulting in reduced water usage.

Quantifiable Outcome

Through ongoing adjustments in irrigation volumes and intervals to align with the daily needs of the plants, SupPlant’s controlled plot demonstrated a significant reduction in water consumption. Remarkably, these measures did not compromise the orchard’s growth, ultimately leading to comparable yields at the end of each period.

Consequently, the adoption of SupPlant’s plant-based approach yielded impressive results, with water savings amounting to 21% in the first year and an even more substantial 38% in the second year. This achievement clearly indicates that SupPlant’s irrigation optimization tool is an effective means of conserving water consistently, year after year.