Sumitomo Chemical has recently launched an urban farming research and development project jointly with the Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA), holding an opening ceremony of the project's hydroponic facilities in Singapore on November 23.

Aiming to develop an optimized hydroponics farming system for leafy vegetables in an urban rooftop environment, based on Japanese agricultural technology, the project is undertaken jointly by AVA, which supports local urban farming to increase food supply resilience with limited land in Singapore, and Sumitomo Chemical, which is extensively developing agriculture-related business globally. Under the project, leafy vegetables will be brought into test cultivation in a greenhouse with the hydroponics technology using sunlight, seeking to achieve higher productivity and better quality of farm products than those hitherto available from conventional farming or cultivation systems.

Sumitomo Chemical assumes overall responsibility for overseeing the entire project, and other participants from Japan in the project include Kaneko Seeds Co., which has superior technologies in such fields as seeds and hydroponics, and SanTerra Co., a Sumitomo Chemical's group company possessing specialized expertise in greenhouse. From Singapore, AVA and Ngee Ann Polytechnic, an institution of higher education, take part in the project. Singapore’s Ministry of National Development and the Singapore Economic Development Board also provide support for the project.

Sumitomo Chemical expects that the project will help establish by 2018 a basic model for promoting sustainable urban farming, making it a platform for the Company to expand the urban farming business in Asia and also in the rest of the world in the years ahead.

Outline of Hydroponic Facilities

Location: The Sembawang Research Station of the Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore
Site area: 233 square meters
Facilities: Greenhouses, hydroponic system (control equipment, four hydroponic beds)

Roles of Project Participants

Sumitomo Chemical: Overall management of the project
Sumitomo Chemical (Asia Pacific): Project operation and test cultivation
Kaneko Seeds: Hydroponic system setup, cultivation technology support and supply of seeds
SanTerra: Supply and setup of greenhouse system
Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore: Test cultivation and provision of site
Ngee Ann Polytechnic: Technical consultation for test cultivation

Profile of Companies and Organizations

Sumitomo Chemical
Head office: Tokyo
President: Masakazu Tokura
Business: Petrochemicals & Plastics, Energy & Functional Materials, IT-related
Chemicals, Health & Crop Sciences, Pharmaceuticals, and Others

Sumitomo Chemical (Asia Pacific)
Head office: Singapore
President: Naohiro Takahashi
Business: Regional headquarters for the Southeast Asia, India, and Oceania region

Kaneko Seeds
Head office: Maebashi City, Gunma Prefecture, Japan
President: Masahiko Kaneko
Business: Seeds and seedlings, garden supplies, landscaping, greenhouse and
agricultural equipment, agrochemicals, hydroponic systems, greenhouse horticulture
equipment, and agricultural civil engineering

SanTerra
Head office: Tokyo
President: Shigeru Oya
Business: High-function greenhouse films, multipurpose films, and greenhouse design
and setup

Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore
A government organization that is responsible for ensuring a resilient supply of safe
food, safeguarding the health and welfare of animals, safeguarding the health of plants
and facilitating agri-trade.

Ngee Ann Polytechnic
Inaugurated in 1963, Ngee Ann Polytechnic is one of Singapore’s leading institutions of
higher learning, offering 49 full-time courses through its nine academic schools, such as
the School of Life Sciences & Chemical Technology.

Ministry of National Development
Singapore’s key government ministry that is responsible for national land use planning
and development.

The Singapore Economic Development Board
The lead government agency for planning and executing strategies to enhance
Singapore’s position as a global business center