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Fujitsu launches company in Finland to produce vegetables year-round with artificial-light plant factory

4 Comments

Fujitsu Limited and Fujitsu Kyushu Systems Limited have established a new company in Finland, Fujitsu Greenhouse Technology Finland Oy, to operate a plant factory equipped with an agricultural Information and Communication Technology (ICT) system, and to produce and sell agricultural products.

The new company, jointly financed by Robbe's Little Garden Ltd, commenced operations on Nov 17. Fujitsu Greenhouse Technology Finland, which will begin full-scale production in the first half of fiscal 2017, uses a plant factory equipped with the latest technologies, including the Fujitsu Intelligent Society Solution "Akisai" Food and Agriculture Cloud, which is Fujitsu's food and agricultural cloud service, along with fully artificial lighting using LEDs, multi-tier growing trays, and full automation.

Fujitsu and Robbe's Little Garden aim to grow and deliver a steady, year-round supply of vegetables, such as baby greens and leaf lettuce, in Finland, which has few hours of sunlight during its harsh winter. Fujitsu also aims to package the know-how and cloud services resulting from this business and deploy them throughout the European Union.

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a "plant factory", as in a "green house" or "indoor farm"?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Why Finland? Do we have enough vegetables here that we venture that far.Why not here at home? Ridiculous.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Really good idea. Alaska would benefit from this system as well.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

People who live in high latitudes AND those who understand how plants grow can appreciate this article. Others will not understand the implications.

Primarily, a greenhouse is used to provide higher temperatures and natural light to plants. This is not a greenhouse. An indoor farm would use all artificial light, with no natural conditions. This is not an indoor farm. In the last sentence of the article is an explanation that this is useful for extending the DAY LENGTH for growth of plants. Plants can more or less process nitrogen down to about 15 degrees. There will be a lot of locations where you can get temperatures that high for at least part of the day, but if plants do not have sufficient day length because of their high latitude, they will need more light, even if it is not strong light.

The article specifically mentions GREENS, such as leaf lettuce, which grow well in cool temperatures, and Finland, which is a high latitude country. Such areas can benefit from systems like this. With just a little bit of light before the sun comes up, and a little bit after it goes down, you can extend the day length and produce SOME crops in a longer season, or even year round.

You can do this in a home greenhouse, but there is a trick to it. Fujitsu will find a limited market in perishable crops such as baby greens and maybe strawberries. For farmers to use it profitably, it will probably have to be large scale production for local markets. Hard to find that niche.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

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