1st Quarter 2020
Greenhouse optimised for the tropics to be built on Bintan island
An eco-tourism destination
Gallant Venture announced on 14 January 2020 that it has partnered with Obayashi Corporation—one of Japan’s largest general contractors—to pilot a technologically advanced greenhouse that is focused on eco-tourism on Bintan island, Indonesia. The Gallant Obayashi Green Agritech Park aims to cultivate premium crops with improved sustainability and higher yields.
“In line with Gallant Venture’s sustainability mission, features such as solar panels will be installed at the Gallant Obayashi Green Agritech Park to support the daytime energy consumption of the greenhouse,” commented Eugene Park, executive director and chief executive officer of Gallant Venture.
Construction and plant physiology
Most crops in the Southeast Asian region are grown on open farms. These use a high volume of water. Although current greenhouse technology can boost productivity, conventional structures require constant climate control in tropical climates, making them costly and not environmentally friendly. These conventional greenhouses mainly only protect the crops from rainfall and exist on highland areas. Unlike those, the Gallant Obayashi Green Agritech Park greenhouse is suitable for lowland areas.
Obayashi has leveraged their agritech and construction experience to simulate a greenhouse suitable for the tropics. For example, the park will leverage on environmental controls to create optimal growth conditions for plants like kale. The 1-hectare greenhouse will be equipped with a complex environmental control system that regulates temperature, humidity and light intensity to maximise crop production and quality as well as reduce water usage.
The greenhouse will consist of an open and closed area, each about 5,000 square metres each. Ventilated by fans, the open greenhouse will be where cherry tomatoes will be grown for tourists to pick. Tapping on Obayashi’s technology and experience in plant physiology, the high-tech greenhouse will also utilise heat and airflow analysis for the climate-controlled closed greenhouse to maintain uniform environmental conditions. Produce from the Agritech Park will be served to guests at Bintan Resorts, as well as exported to Singapore and beyond in future.
The park will also house a Visitor and Education Centre for tourists and students to promote agri-technology, as well as to deepen the public’s knowledge of cultivation using urban technology.
The construction of the greenhouse in the Agritech Park will commence in March 2020 and will be completed by the end of the year. With a target of 100 tonnes of produce per year from both open and closed greenhouses annually, visitors to Bintan Resorts can look forward to farm-to-table experiences as they enjoy fresh local produce from early 2021.