Karls Erdbeerhof, a producer of agricultural products and strawberries in Germany, and iFarm will engage in a joint R&D project in Rövershagen, Germany. Using the aeroponic growing method, Karls Erdbeerhof and iFarm will assess the viability and economic potential of large-scale, indoor strawberry production with the goal of developing ecologically sustainable growing methods for the future. The first experimental strawberry harvest is planned for the first quarter of 2022.
“We strongly believe that the current concept of agriculture is changing dramatically within all its aspects over the next decades. Vertical farming as such is only a small part of a solution to a bigger problem. The key will be to let all technologies, solutions, and ideas interconnect to create sustainable farming for the future. The intriguing part about vertical farming is that the topic is actually way broader than we can imagine. At this stage, even the best vertical farm builders have only scratched the surface of what is possible. Experiencing iFarm´s “Can Do! ” — attitude we believe that it is the right fit! Furthermore, iFarm shares some of the same partners, ideas, and values as we do," said Axel Stelter with Karls Erdbeerhof.
iFarm has already delivered a nutrient solution preparation system, climate control system, shelving structures, and phyto-lighting to ensure the vertical farm is fully equipped with growing technology and the equipment is currently being installed on-site in Rövershagen. iFarm will also participate in the research and development process, with Karls Erdbeerhof managing the facility and conducting experiments. Once commissioning and installation are complete, the equipment will be connected to iFarm’s automated IT platform, Growtune, which will monitor and optimize production conditions and farm processes in real-time.
“We really happy to work with Karls, their more than 100 years of strawberry experience combined with our technology can be exactly a magic recipe to create the best ever way to grow delicious berries whole year-round. We hope that the long-term partnership between Karls and iFarm will deliver a stable supply of fresh, tasty, and healthy strawberries to Germany and other parts of Europe," said Kirill Zelenski, CEO iFarm Emea.
Karls Erdbeerhof is the operator of Karls Erlebnis-Dörfer theme parks and the largest agricultural producer in Germany, specializing in the cultivation of strawberries. The company was founded in 1921 by Karl Dahl, near the German city of Rostok. Today, the company owns five amusement parks, each of which features farm stores, glass factories, restaurants, and attractions.