Panasonic's fresh new product - salads

Panasonic started growing vegetables and herbs at its indoor farm in Tuas last year and production is expanding rapidly.
Panasonic started growing vegetables and herbs at its indoor farm in Tuas last year and production is expanding rapidly. ST PHOTO: PANASONIC

Japanese electronics giant Panasonic has gone green in a big way by selling salads at selected supermarkets here under its new agriculture brand Veggie Life.

As improbable as it sounds, the firm grows vegetables at its 1,154 sq m indoor farm within the grounds of its Tuas factory.

Panasonic, which started growing herbs and vegetables here last year, said the farm has expanded its annual production capacity from 3.6 tonnes to 81 tonnes with 38 types of vegetables now grown.

The crops include leafy greens like lettuce and mizuna, herbs such as basil and chervil as well as watercress, radish, broccoli and mustard wasabi.

A company spokesman said yesterday that Veggie Life is Panasonic's foray into the consumer business. "We foresee the agriculture business to be a potential growth portfolio, given the global shortage of arable land, climate change and demand for high-quality and stable food supply," the spokesman said.

Veggie Life salad packs are available in three varieties and cost $6.90 each. Panasonic aims to sell about 15,000 to 18,000 packs a month.

The firm said it plans to provide 5 per cent of Singapore's local vegetable production by the end of March 2017.

It intends to invest about $3 million into the business to achieve annual production of 1,000 tonnes by that time.

Singapore produced 22,720 tonnes of vegetables last year while importing 524,390 tonnes, according to the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 20, 2015, with the headline 'Panasonic's fresh new product - salads'. Print Edition | Subscribe