agriculture joint venture
Includes grafted vegetables and hydroponics
Agrigrow, a subsidiary of Batroun-based Robinson Agri, will launch in April, also in Batroun. It will develop a 17 hectares vegetable grafting site in a joint venture with Dutch agriculture company, Grow Group.
Nadine El Khoury Kadi, Chief Operations Officer, said that $800,000 has been invested so far, $600,000 of which is self-funded. A $200,000 Kafalat guaranteed loan was secured to make up the shortfall.
El Khoury Kadi said: “The vegetable seeds will be imported from the Netherlands, and training will be provided by Grow Group.”
Grafted vegetables offer disease resistant roots, decreasing the use of pesticides.
Robinson Agri is also installing a hydroponic nutrient film technique (NFT) system. The technique involves a very shallow stream of water containing all the dissolved nutrients required for plant growth that is re-circulated past the bare roots in a watertight gully.
“The system saves water and decreases fertilization. It enables year-round production to increase rates fivefold every year,” El-Khouri said.
Reported by Derek A. Issacs
Date Posted: Jan 20, 2017