Warehousing and logistics company GKE Corporation, via its wholly-owned subsidiary GKE Agritech, has received its farm licence from the Singapore Food Authority to commercialise indoor farming. 

The receipt of the farm licence allows GKE Agritech to grow and sell its produce commercially in Singapore.

In a press release on Mar 30, GKE explained that with consumers becoming increasingly aware of healthy living, there is a higher demand for better quality and higher nutritional value produce. 

This, together with Singapore’s dependence on imported food, motivated it to broaden its businesses into agriculture, it said. 

GKE took into account, among others, that its strategic investment in GKE Agritech would enable it to achieve better utilisation of its office premises and to align with the Singapore Government’s initiative to produce 30% of the nation’s nutritional needs locally by 2030.

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The company revealed that its unutilised office premise located at 6 Pioneer Walk has since been converted into an indoor farm, and has obtained approvals from all relevant authorities to grow vegetables indoors. 

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It added it has adopted the controlled-environment agriculture approach, where automation and sensors are deployed to provide protection and maintain optimal growing conditions throughout the development of the crop. 

GKE then said the initial focus of GKE Agritech is to grow kale as its key product for local consumption, and believes that indoor cultivation of kale will provide consistency in the quality and quantity of pesticide-free vegetables,

Neo Cheow Hui, CEO and Executive Director of GKE explained that the kale is cultivated indoors vertically via a racking system, which allows the company to enjoy higher utilisation of the office space. 

Furthermore, Neo said the current cultivation area for kale is about 2,400 square feet, and with the farm licence, the company is looking to increase the cultivation area gradually to 12,500 square feet.

As the business of GKE Agritech is still at an early stage, GKE does not expect this to have any material contribution to the Group in the current financial year ending 31 May 2021, and said it will update shareholders on material developments as and when they arise.

As at 12.53pm, shares of GKE were trading flat at 13 cents.