Jun 5, 2024
Solar-powered indoor vertical strawberry farm opens

Oishii has opened a new indoor vertical strawberry farm in Phillipsburg, New Jersey, that spans more than 237,000 square feet. This new facility is adjacent to an expansive solar field is Oishii’s Amatelas Farm, which runs on renewable energy.

Amatelas Farm offers individual farm units, which are each home to 250 moving racks of Oishii’s Koyo strawberries. Every rack is stacked with eight growing levels that move from the warmth of day to the coolness of night on a 24-hour cycle. Oishii’s moving architecture automates the growing process and enables bees, robots and farmers to work together to grow more berries in the same footprint. 

Amatelas Farm harvests are grown primarily with solar power – sourced from the 50-acre solar field next door. Built in a repurposed plastics manufacturing plant, the farm is also outfitted with LED lights that use 14% less energy per plant. The facility’s water purification system has eight times more capacity than the older Oishii farms, allowing it to recycle the majority of the water it uses today. 

“At Oishii, we run towards problems once thought to be impossible to solve. In just two years, we’ve developed technological breakthroughs now in use at Amatelas Farm that make our growing process significantly more efficient, yet just as delicious. Our new farm represents a huge step forward in our mission to grow food that’s better for people and the planet,” said Hiroki Koga, CEO and co-founder of Oishii.

Nearly 50 robots work around-the-clock at Amatelas Farm to ensure berries are picked at the peak of ripeness and optimize operations over time. The company’s robots capture over 60 billion data points annually, which are used to monitor and adjust the environmental variables of each farm unit. 

With the space to grow more than 20 times the number of berries from its previous facility, the farm’s unique location near the border of New Jersey and Pennsylvania also unlocks new expansion opportunities for Oishii. The company will enter new markets along the East Coast and expand its relationship with retail partners like Whole Foods Market and FreshDirect. 

While several farm units remain under construction, Amatelas Farm will now serve as the primary production facility for Oishii’s Koyo strawberries. Oishii will also continue to operate a farm in Kearny, where most of its plants are propagated. 

Oishii will begin to trial new types of berries with retailers in the weeks to come, with plans to unveil a new strawberry varietal later this year.

For more information, visit oishii.com.

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