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How Oishii Berry Brought Japan’s Most Expensive Strawberries to America

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“To me, a strawberry is one thing I grew up with in Japan. It has at all times been a deal with for me,” says Oishi Berry co-founder and CEO Hiroki Koga. “Rising up as a child I’d solely have strawberries for particular events, so if I had a strawberry on the eating desk, I knew one thing good occurred that day.” That is what impressed Koga’s first-of-its-kind indoor vertical strawberry farm in America, with the objective of constantly creating the very best high quality strawberry attainable.

The engineered berries undergo a meticulous progress and monitoring course of, from seed to completed product. The result’s a strawberry with a constant and optimum measurement, taste, and texture. At his indoor farm, Koga’s group assessments over 20 totally different environments to see which is finest to develop indoor vegetation, and propagates seedlings primarily based on the outcomes. Koga walks us by the 5 ranges of sanitization wanted earlier than getting into the atmosphere. He explains that one room is particularly created to copy the local weather within the Japanese alps, the place Japanese strawberries are grown. The berries take 30 to 40 days to ripen, and his group is extremely skilled to reap them on the actual second of peak ripeness. Each single strawberry is delicately lower, visually checked for bruising, weighed, and documented. Damaged or bruised strawberries are despatched to eating places which may use them in purees and sauces. Proper after harvest, the berries get packaged in a chilly atmosphere, whereas going by a closing inspection. That is when a BRIC check is carried out, which measures the degrees of sweetness within the berries. A standard, store-bought strawberry usually measures in anyplace between 4 and 7 BRICs, however Oishii’s measure at about 12 BRICS.

Oishii can be the primary vertical farm on the planet that has succeeded in controlling bees in a totally closed, synthetic atmosphere. The bees fly freely and conduct pollination as they’d in nature. Koga goes on to elucidate how this indoor farm can obtain extra feats like this with its indoor atmosphere, comparable to avoiding harsh, outside working situations for farmers, and making a constant product with out having to depend on an ever altering and unsustainable local weather.

“Indoor vertical farm expertise can obtain that,” confirms Koga. “Certain it’s costly, but it surely removes all of those issues which are presently prompted within the agriculture business, and it’s actually good for our employees.”

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