The agriculture sector continues to seek effective solutions to achieve food security and safety given the country's rising population. But while the government has implemented various initiatives to boost local farming and elevate livelihoods, it can only do so much.
This is where private companies like Urban Greens come in, working as engines of growth towards sustainable domestic food production. The Manila-based agri-tech and urban farming company is doing its part via hydroponics, often called soilless farming, where crops are fed nutrient-rich water.
Recalling how the company evolved to become a successful agri-tech and urban farming firm, said Ralph Becker, founder and CEO of the company. "I think the biggest accomplishment is that I'm still here because it's five years later and start-ups don't normally have a shelf life of five years, particularly if they're quite unprofitable and trying to find their way." He admitted that the company nearly went bankrupt twice, primarily due to business models that not suitable for their limited space.
One of the company's biggest milestones, according to Becker, was when Urban Greens finished its Makati City facility and began producing high-quality greens that are 100-percent GMO- and artificial pesticide-free. "The biggest milestone is that we are here now and that we're in a space that is geared up for more growth," he said.
Supply disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and recent weather disruptions, in particular, have highlighted the need for companies such as Urban Greens that are perfectly situated to address consumer demand.
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