Looking at the issue of food security and the future, three young entrepreneurs have banded together to create Honest Greens, an indoor vertical farm that uses a myriad of technologies, including precision hydroponics, climate control, and horticultural lighting to build a farm (and pioneer a farming method) that is climate-resilient, resource-efficient, and provides fresh produce that can comply with the highest standards in food safety and traceability.
Advani explained that he, Cooray, and Tyagarajah (who have been friends nearly their whole lives) would often discuss things they felt were needed to bring change to Sri Lanka. They understood that the industries they each were in were losing more and more control over their supply chains. They also noticed a lack of investment and innovation in the agricultural industry, a field which is transforming around the world in order to deliver produce that is clean, safe, and reliable.
The Honest Greens journey began after the trio saw a documentary that outlined just what kind of problems the agricultural industry was likely to face – from increased difficulty meeting demand with traditional farming to dwindling resources to climate change. Slowly, the concept of Honest Greens, a means of alternative farming, took shape, with its very first plant, a spinach plant, being grown by the trio in a cupboard at Tyagarajah’s home. The exceptional quality of this first plant convinced the friends that they were on the right track, setting them on a path of trial and error that has ultimately led them to their first commercially successful indoor-vertical farm, scaling up along the way with support from a grant from the World Bank. Currently, Honest Greens grows different types of lettuce, kale, and specialty greens such as green rocket, basil, and pak choi to name a few.
“At Honest Greens, we are honestly looking at Sri Lanka as a model project with our long-term agenda focusing more on the global market,” Cooray explained. “We see indoor vertical farming playing a very large role in global agriculture down the line, both with our existing challenges of food security, climate change, rising populations, and with the whole host of surprises we’re not yet aware of.”
Read the complete article at www.nation.lk
For more information:
Sanuja Cooray, co-founder
Aneeshan Tyagarajah, co-founder
Ashish Advani, co-founder
+94 11 702 4251