BoomGrow Productions Sdn Bhd.
BoomGrow Productions Sdn Bhd. was established in 2014 to revolutionize farming by using emerging technologies for clean indoor vegetable production in urban areas. The company developed a high-tech production unit that miniaturizes a one-acre vegetable farm into a 30 square metre shipping container by employing hydroponic techniques and modern technology. The container farm is climate controlled with water recycling technology that can grow healthy vegetables even in the harshest of environments while using only 2 per cent of the water. The farm is fully automated, with its proprietary software and robotic technology it does not need human intervention between planting. BoomGrow has developed the formula to grow 33 varieties of fully organic, pesticide free leafy plants. The company has been operating a pilot container farm since 2018 and claims to be able “…to bring healthy food from farm to plate within 45 minutes…”. Currently the vegetables from the farm are bought by a restaurant with high paying (not B40) customers, and the container farm is operating on a profit.
The current business model is producing safe food. This food is much cheaper than traditional organic food. The company in its current business model, however, does not target the B40. While safe food has a high social value, the company is a mainstream business as its safe food is not consumed by the B40. BoomGrow would only qualify as an inclusive business, if the company can assure through the deliberate business model that its affordable safe food is also consumed by the B40.
Each container is estimated to feed the vegetable needs of 250 families or about 1,000 people. This is the equivalent a farmer with 1 acre of land can produce. The difference is that the container food is not dependent on agricultural seasons and not affected by diseases. Container food yields more than double than field food. By 2020 (once all 11 containers are delivered), the vegetable needs of 11,000 people can be covered by BoomGrow’s container farm, and by 2023 with 30 containers 30,000 people. The BoomGrow container vegetables cost half the price than organic vegetables from the field and only 30 per cent higher than the non-organic vegetable from neighbouring countries found in the urban markets. Safe organic vegetables from BoomGrow are affordable for the B40, while other organic vegetables are not. The B40 would consume such vegetable if they were available in their vicinity. BoomGrow is very strong on technological and environmental innovations. It is using only 1 per cent of the space and 2 per cent of the water of conventional farms. The company is also experimenting to reduce the high energy costs in the operation of container vegetables.