Crop in Plant Factories are grown in completely controlled environments, with suitable climatic conditions. The crops are grown with led lighting and hydroponic growing technologies. Therefore, regardless of external conditions, you can produce your crops in a healthy way for 365 days.
Plant factories are the future of sustainable agriculture. Our arable lands are both getting smaller and of poor quality due to climate change, increasing temperature values, decreasing water sources, barrenness, pollution and chemical use. In addition, global population growth and urbanization negatively affect arable land. Different and innovative solutions are needed in order to feed people and offer them quality food. The solution today is greenhouses. However, our greenhouses occupy very large agricultural areas and cannot provide continuous production. With Plant Factories, you can make continuous production in narrow areas and obtain standard quality products. You are also independent of all the unpredictable conditions of our nature.
The concepts of Plant Factories are still very new to our world. With the awareness in this area in the coming years, authorities and administrations will elaborate more about this issue. Investors will direct their energy and financial resources to this area. This will pave the way for continuous, fixed-price and chemical-free food.
Of course, it can. That's why plant factories exist. With its plant factories, it can produce the same production both in Kenya, England and in the Poles; you can grow the same quality and healthy product.
First of all, it is very important to reach reasonable investment and operating costs for sustainability. The cost of transporting cold chain food from one country or city to another is around half to one dollar. For this reason, on-site production provides many advantages. In addition, there is no external threat in production; since you don't have to fight against bacteria and insects, you don't use pesticides either. Thus, creates a healthy and economical production model.
Also, consider areas of the world where agriculture is scarce, the tropical and arctic zones. Growing crops in these regions are very costly or nearly impossible due to drought and temperatures. Plant Factories completely eliminate this problem. Considering that 50-60% of the total production cost is energy, Plant Factories are an excellent solution especially for oil-rich countries located in hot geographies and where energy is cheap. We are confident that the administrations in these countries will provide great investment support to Plant Factories and that investments in this field will increase greatly. Finally, a great plant breeding revolution will take place.
Every plant can grow well in nature. However, the main issue is efficiency. Every plant has different requirements in order to grow. It is necessary to grow spinach, arugula and lettuce under separate conditions, under different conditions, where they are most productive.
The same is true in Plant Factories. Each plant should have different environments in which it will be conditioned differently. Since you have complete control of the climate, you can provide the plants in environmental conditions they need. Let's take spinach and lettuce as an example. We eat these 2 plants at the same time, but they both have different needs to grow. For example, spinach should be grown in a cooler environment than lettuce.
According to our definition, Plant Factory; its input is seeds, water and plant food, the output is packaged and ready-to-market food. The important thing in Plant Factories is the m2 of planted area. For the costs of plant factories, first of all, many different parameters such as the products to be grown, the production capacity, the automation to be applied, the remote management, the packaging to be made, the geography to be installed must be determined by analyzing correctly. The correct costs can be revealed with the detailed project studies to be carried out afterwards.
The return on investment is around 3 to 4 years in developed countries. The main determinants here are the energy cost and the market selling price of the product.
There are 3 main disciplines in plant factories. The first of these are the plant nutrition and dosing system, the other is the lighting system required for the photosynthesis of the plant, and the third is the HVAC systems that provides the desired environment for the plant. Apart from these, the mechanism required to the handle the plants, an electronic system that monitors and manages the factory, and the accounting module that enables financial monitoring of the operation are among other technologies used.
The healthy operation of the plant factory can only be possible with the correct and integrated operation of all these systems. Especially in large-scale Plant Factories...
Japan is the most experienced and knowledgeable country in this regard. In this country, both the market prices of the products are high (a lettuce may cost 5 EURO) and the public is very sensitive about healthy food. With this awareness, we received on-site training twice from Toyoki Kozai, the industry's guru. We are the first in the whole world in this field. Apart from that, the USA and Canada are strong countries in the field of plant factories.
European countries are also making significant investments in this area, but they do not have large-scale industrial plant factories yet. Our prototype plant factory in our own facilities is the largest functioning factory in Europe.
In addition, experimental studies are carried out all over the world. We can talk about thousands of large and small test facilities working with different systems. However, the number of industrial plants must increase in order for the market to get used to the products grown in the plant factories. A trend in this direction has started in the world. Especially large capital groups are very enthusiastic about investing in industrial agriculture. Investments in this area will start for green leafy products; then, with the development and diversification of technology, it will continue with common vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers and eggplants.
Mankind first started farming on these lands 10,000 years ago. Now, the latest technology of agriculture is still developing in Turkey. However, investing in a plant factory in Turkey is a difficult matter. Because all plants can be grown easily in the country and their costs are cheap.
However, the products that come out of the Plant Factories are healthy products that are pesticide-free, grown with 95% less water and has minimum carbon footprint. Moreover, they are produced every day at the same quality and at the same cost. In these conditions, we will all consume much more plant products when the market accepts them as being more costly than greenhouse products.
We had completed all our preparations last year to bring the products grown in our own facilities to the market-shelves. Just during this period, we had an unfortunate event and our entire factory burned down. Thereupon, we rolled up our sleeves and decided to build the factory with advanced technology, which we plan to realize 3 years later. We have made significant R&D investments. We took the opportunity out of the crisis and prepared a facility equipped with the innovations we dreamed of.
Although we are not involved in sales communication activities, we have received requests from many countries for 2 years. However, as we are preparing for the future, we put these demands on hold. We will start the actual demonstrations after our facility is fully completed and ready for customer acceptance. We have a 1.5-month process ahead of us for this. However, there is an order we received from Nigeria just before the fire. Our second installation will be in Nigeria.