American startup run by Japanese entrepreneur opens the world’s largest strawberry factory near New York

Thanks to Oishii Farm
Robots harvest strawberries at the new Oishii Farm factory.

NEW YORK – Oishii Farm, an American startup run by a Japanese entrepreneur, announced this week that the company will operate the world’s largest strawberry planting factory near New York.

The factory grows Japanese strawberry varieties that will mainly be sold on the east coast of the United States.

The New Jersey factory covers 22,000 square meters. Artificial intelligence controls the temperature, humidity, amount of light and other elements to mimic the environment in Japan. Robots harvest the fruits when they are perfectly ripe.

The factory has a completely enclosed environment, so that no harmful insects or germs can enter. It is said that the factory can produce strawberries all year round without pesticides. The company plans to recycle most of the water needed to grow the fruit and use electricity from renewable energy sources.

Oishii Farm was founded in 2016 and started production in 2017. In February this year, the company announced that it had received an investment of approximately ¥20 billion from NTT Corp., Mizuho Bank and other investors, and most of had put the money into building the factory. new factory.

A pack of about 10 strawberries sells for $10 to $12 (¥1,600 to ¥1,900). The price is more than three times higher than the strawberries typically sold in the United States, but Oishii Farm strawberries are becoming very popular because of their sweetness and fragrant scent. That is why the company has decided to expand production.

“I would like to share the appeal of high-quality Japanese fruit with the world,” said Hiroki Koga, 37, the company’s CEO.