Australian founders continue to optimize vertical farming for clean food

Orlar was founded in Brisbane in 2014 by Dr. Lyndal Hugo and Amanda Cornelissen. Their mission was to develop a new form of vertical farming to produce affordable, accessible, and contaminant-free organic produce.

Cornelissen’s experience as a horticulturist, in combination with Hugo’s experience in agriscience, a PhD in environmental chemistry, and a post-doctoral fellowship on pesticide residues in South-East Asian food chains, were excellent foundations for reaching their agritech goals.

Having seen the impact of decades of industrialization and poor agricultural practices contaminating the soil in which food is grown in Vietnam, the couple decided to move to Ho Chi Minh City in 2017 to continue developing their vertical pod technology there.

Two key components
Firstly, Orlar’s patented vertical pod technology is not a typical indoor or vertical agriculture system. The carefully designed Orlar pods took 5 years of research to perfect. Each pod can reduce the energy use of traditional hydroponics by over 95%. Indoor agriculture normally requires energy-intensive inputs for temperature control and lighting. However, Orlar utilizes heat and light from the sun to grow 20-40 plants in each two-meter-high pod, so it is extremely space-efficient and energy-efficient.


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