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Singapore: I.F.F.I closes vertical farm and Sky Greens Singapore downsizes

Another casualty has emerged in Singapore's high-tech farming sector, The Straits Times has learnt, in yet another sign of the teething challenges plaguing the nascent industry. Local indoor farm I.F.F.I, said to have the ability to produce some 300 tonnes of leafy greens a year, has shuttered its mega 38,000 sq m facility in Tuas.

I.F.F.I's holding company, precision engineering firm TranZPlus Engineering, has entered into liquidation, with court documents showing that it filed for insolvency in November 2023. The company produced a range of crops from arugula and kale to green lettuce and red bok choy, selling its vegetables under the brand name, Next Farmers. The produce was previously available at FairPrice supermarkets.

I.F.F.I vacated its farm – which was located at Space@Tuas – and returned the units to JTC Corporation in April 2024. ST understands that all its equipment was left behind. JTC did not respond to queries on whether the company owes its rent. I.F.F.I was a recipient of the Singapore Food Agency's (SFA) 30 by 30 express grant in 2020 – which gave nine farms $39.4 million to help them ramp up production amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

SFA did not respond to queries on how much grant funding was disbursed to the farm, but according to I.F.F.I's 2021 financial statement, it would have received at least $2.9 million in cash grants from SFA for the farm's construction.

Meanwhile, ST understands that local farm Sky Greens Singapore, which had touted its patented vertical farming systems as being an innovative and environmentally friendly way of growing vegetables, is scaling down its operations. While the company declined to respond to queries from ST, a visit to the farm's 5ha plot in Lim Chu Kang earlier in May showed that many of its greenhouses had been torn down.

Read the entire article at the Straits Times

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