Newport World Resorts launches own urban farm
MANILA — Newport World Resorts gives new meaning to “farm-to-table” with the launch of its new ILE urban farm, through Marriott Hotel Manila, as part of its I Love Earth (ILE) program.
With the I Love Earth program that was started one year ago, Newport World Resorts ramps up its commitment to caring for the planet by carrying out sustainability programs of the integrated resort and its international partner hotels.
The urban farm was constructed by Malaysian agri-tech startup, Boomgrow.
Marriott executive chef Meik Brammer saw one of these self-contained machine farms in action while doing work for a separate project in Langkawi, Malaysia. He then proposed building one for the property to the I Love Earth Council. Twenty months later, the new urban farm was shipped from Malaysia and installed in the heart of Newport World Resorts.
The ILE urban farm is housed inside a standard 320-sq. ft. shipping container which is outfitted with Boomgrow’s proprietary Indoor Precision Farming technology. Fresh produce will be grown within a highly-controlled environment, using best-in-class hydroponic systems that are supported by artificial intelligence to ensure optimal conditions. This farm will grow high-value vegetables for use in the property’s restaurants.
“The technology behind the urban farm gives us the ability to source clean greens all year round, producing a higher yield while using 95% less land 95% Less water 95% less fuel and definitely no carbon footprint,” said Newport World Resorts CEO and president Kingson Sian.
Newport World Resorts can choose from 180 different types of herbs and vegetables to grow at the farm all year round. Some vegetables, like purple bok choy, no longer have to be imported as these can be grown on the property, saving transportation costs and ensuring the freshness of the produce.
Brammer showed off some of the dishes that can be prepared using these freshly harvested vegetables for the properties’ restaurants. The highlight was the bok choy in the Shanghainese salad with this dumpling dish. It was extra crisp with a touch of leafy sweetness that’s quite remarkable for a simple stir-fried dish.
Moving forward, this urban farm can be considered a pilot site for Boomgrow as it is the first installation outside Malaysia. The success of this urban farm may see adoption of this technology by nearby communities in the future.