Inside this nondescript Kalera building at the Parc 19 urban industrial development on Rankin Road will be state-of-the art technology growing lettuce that is chemical free and uses 95 percent less water than a traditional farm. Those pink LED lights (below) may look a little eerie, but they are growing a tasty lettuce that could soon be found on a Lake Houston family table.

The day is coming when the lettuce on a Lake Houston family’s salad may have been grown on a farm in – Humble!

A hydroponic farm, that is.

Kalera, a “vertical” farming company based in Orlando, is customizing an 83,436-square-foot building at Parc 59, a 19-acre urban industrial development located on Rankin Road in Humble.

The CEO of Kalera is enthusiastic about establishing his fourth “farm” in Lake Houston.

- Kalera brings ‘vertical farming’Kalera brings ‘vertical farming’to Lake Houston -

“Humble’s proximity to Houston and beyond will provide an incredible market for Kalera’s produce,” said Daniel Malechuk, the company chief executive officer.

Kalera’s product is lettuce which includes the company’s signature Kalera Krunch, among other varieties. The method for growing the lettuce is hydroponics.

Hydroponic farms don’t need soil. They don’t need the sun. Instead, the plants’ roots grow using cleanroom technology eliminating harmful pathogens and destructive bugs and insects. No pesticides. No insecticides.

The lighting is low-energy, LED, artificial lighting. Kalera, in fact, can manipulate the color of the lettuce as it grows. And the size of plants is extremely uniform – a consistent product every time.

The farms use more energy than traditional farming, but they also use less water and they get higher yields.

Kalera grows safe, highly nutritious, pesticide-free, non-GMO, high quality lettuce that has a longer shelf-life year-round.

“We operate a high-yield, automated, data-driven hydroponic product facility, designed for rapid rollout with industry-leading payback times to grow vegetables faster, cleaner, at a lower cost, and with less environmental impact,” Malechuk says.

The Humble “farm,” when completed in Spring 2021, will be the largest of Kalera’s four facilities and the largest vertical family facility in Texas. Kalera has two “farms” in its hometown of Orlando and one under construction in Atlanta, also scheduled to open in Spring 2021.

“We selected the Humble location because of the frontage on Highway 59/Interstate 69, the access to the Beltway and, because the development is in Humble. It has competitive expenses due to the city’s low tax rate.”

Malechuk, the Kalera CEO, praises the Humble location.

“Our proximity to Houston will provide an incredible market for Kalera’s produce,” he says. “From Humble, Kalera can access and service cities throughout the region besides Houston including Dallas-Fort Worth, Austin, San Antonio, and New Orleans.”

Within hours of harvesting in Humble, Kalera will be able to provide lettuce to restaurants, hospitality clients other industry clients, and home chefs, Malechuk predicts, and perhaps, even, to tables in the homes of Lake Houston.

Tom Broad
Author: Tom BroadEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Columnist
Besides being a proud graduate of The University of Nebraska-Lincoln and, therefore, a Cornhusker, I am retired from Memorial Hermann. I am a correspondent and columnist for Lake Houston's hometown paper, The Tribune, as well as a director of the Lake Houston Redevelopment Corporation, a member of the board of the Humble Area Assistance Ministries, and Volunteer Extraordinaire for the Lake Houston Area Chamber.

Comments (0)

There are no comments posted here yet

Leave your comments

  1. Posting comment as a guest. Sign up or login to your account.
Attachments (0 / 3)
Share Your Location