This interview details Farmacy HK, an indoor farming company based in Hong Kong. The interview is with Raymond Mak, Co-founder & CEO of Farmacy HK.
What is the origin story of Farmacy HK?
The concept for Farmacy HK came to be after Raymond visited a rural village in China, where he had some of the best-tasting greens in his life, served fresh from the farms. People living in urban cities are not exposed to the same freshly harvested vegetables, and he wants to change that with our cutting-edge Smart Farming technology, which will bring high-quality green produce to the heart of cities.
Farmacy HK was founded in 2018, with community effort from like-minded people. The same year, it was incubated at Cyberport as a green-tech start-up in Hong Kong. During the first few years after its creation, Farmacy HK was at a development stage, with our team actively researching the best suitable Smart Farming technology that provides the perfect environment for plants to grow indoors.
In 2020, Farmacy HK became the 1st urban farming technology company in Asia to create Smart Mobile Farms with cloud-based control capabilities for highly urbanized cities. Now it has expanded to more than 20 locations, spanning more than five market categories: F&B venues, retail outlets, hospitality establishments, real estate developments, and educational institutions, and will be entering the overseas market in the near future.
What is unique about Farmacy HK compared to competitors?
One of the core values of our company is the high-quality service we provide to our clients, delivering the complete “farming-as-a-service” experience. To maintain our status we use all the tools at our disposal, differentiating ourselves further from the already revolutionary way of farming.
Our enclosed system with complete environmental control and remote monitoring capability allows us to manage our Smart Mobile Farm from a distance, facilitating the creation of a decentralized network of our farms, that is also more sustainable, energy-efficient, and environmentally friendly food system.
We collect and use real-time data from our plants to adopt a Farming-as-a-Service (FaaS) business model and continuously improve yield, nutritional value, and taste. This, along with our custom-built ability and flexibility to adapt our design to different settings ensures unique farm services provision for a diverse customer base.
We recognize the importance of raising awareness of urban farming in the next generation, and our strong presence in the education sector helps us achieve this. We offer a wide array of courses ranging from A.I., coding, urban farming, and social entrepreneurship. We also further enhance our product through our collaboration with local and regional universities on farming research and development.
How do you measure the impact of Farmacy HK so far? (Revenue, Employees, Customer Quantity, Production Volume) etc?
Our innovative Smart Farming technology has the potential to create a lot of positive impact, and we make sure to take full advantage of that. The capability of our farms to grow plants indoors significantly reduces the need for travel and its carbon footprint.
This alongside our advanced energy-saving capabilities, amounts to every one square meter more than 20 locations we manage to save 225.68 tons of carbon annually. The positive environmental impact of our system goes beyond carbon saving, as our products also help significantly reduce food by 30% percent down to 10% in supermarkets.
The plants growing on our farms are also guaranteed to be fresh and high in quality, and our clients recognize that. As a result, one of our supermarket clients removed one imported brand after introducing us. Similarly, in the retail sector, we are the best performer among the products at the same pricing level.
Creating positive social impact is also an important goal of our company, as we work towards building a strong community of urban farmers in the general public. We extend the offer of STEAM education, and experience-based events to our clients and partners, to help increase the awareness of urban farming.
Our STEAM education program and experience-based events make use of the Smart Farm to learn more about the data-driven technology and the AI that runs the mobile farms, the alternative method of farming, urban farming, and the applications of green initiatives in society. Additionally, we also partner with educational institutions to offer a more extensive, year-long program, “Grow For Future”.
How can people connect with you or learn more about Farmacy HK?
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