Veggie farm casts new light on indoor cultivation
Panasonic opened the first licensed indoor vegetable farm in Singapore in 2013, and its agricultural products are sold under the Veggie Life brand at local supermarkets.
"Our crops are grown in a controlled environment where light, temperature, humidity and carbon dioxide are controlled to ensure optimum conditions," said a spokesman from Panasonic's indoor farm.
"As such, the cultivation period of crops at our indoor farm is significantly shorter as compared with traditional farms."
She added: "Crops at local traditional farms are subject to variable weather conditions and seasonal changes.
"At Panasonic's indoor agriculture farm, we remove this unpredictability. By controlling cultivation conditions, we optimise crop growth and ensure a stable supply all year-round."
The farm grows more than 30 varieties like green leafy lettuce, rainbow chard, oba, mizuna and baby spinach.
It doubles productivity by seeding and potting plants with an automated system, and is looking into hybrid technology.
"The core idea of our agriculture business is to contribute to Singapore's self-sufficiency levels. Government bodies such as (the Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore) have put in place a conducive infrastructure for urban indoor farming," the spokesman said.
"Certifications like Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points ensures stringent food safety standards are adhered to. Our farm is also currently assessing the feasibility of creating hybrid technology, combining the advantages of both soil-based and hydroponics methodology."