Denso PH starts smart farm in Batangas

Denso Philippines Corporation has started operation of its P60-million hydrophonic smart agri tech farm in Ibaan, Batangas Fresh that seeks to produce high value vegetables and fruits, far from its primary automotive business.

The Board of Investments (BOI), which approved Denso’s agriculture venture in July 2022, announced that the company opened its doors to visitors through an open farm event conducted recently, showcasing its innovative and modern agricultural farming technology.

The Hydroponic Smart Agri Tech Farm is a new producer of high-value crops such as microgreens, kale, arugula, herbs, and melons under the Agriculture, Fishery, and Forestry listing of the 2022 Strategic Investment Priority Plan (SIPP).

Known as a key player in the automotive industry, Denso Philippines leveraged on its manufacturing expertise, adopting best practices therefrom as it ventured into agriculture to provide innovative solutions to existing agricultural challenges in the Philippines and project a modernized Philippine agriculture and highly-productive farming.

The farm features climate-resilient greenhouse buildings which employs integrated pest/disease management. Vegetables are commercially grown using hydroponic technology, which substitutes soil with coco peats to produce crops. With this process, water remains in the system and is reused. The farm also intends to use zero to minimal farm chemicals, which in turn, can decrease carbon footprint. The firm is now actively exploring how it can engage in carbon credits trading in the future.

Paving the way for an innovative and more modern Philippine agriculture, the company is also already testing a prototype of its IoT (Internet of Things) system, which they plan to fully implement within the year.

According to BOI, the said system will be used to control and manage irrigation, nutrient and pH levels, log data trends and send alarms when parameters go off the standard. Dubbed as AUTODOSE I, the system is said to be a pioneer product that aims to enhance small scale farming in the country. Through this technology, the firm aims to demonstrate low-cost automation system for crop farming which can be adopted by local small-scale producers.

Aside from the innovative farming solutions, the farm also features efficient systems to minimize post-harvest losses and strict quality controls to ensure only superior quality produce will reach their clients.

Denso sees its high-value crops project as essential in supporting urban farming activities in the Philippines, as well as addressing the low sufficiency of highland vegetables and food security.