When we think of greenhouses, we tend to think of the cold hills of Nuwara Eliya, old fashioned English homes and Victorian botanical gardens full of exotic plants. We don’t tend to think high tech, modern or organic, and we certainly don’t think of Anuradhapura. This is where Saaraketha, Sri Lanka’s only certified organic fresh fruit and vegetable retailer, has dreamt bigger and delivered better than anyone thought possible. They have harnessed the future of agriculture and brought it to reality today, in the form of a greenhouse project that will see the face of Sri Lankan organic agriculture change overnight.
Not only a first for Sri Lanka, but a first for the entire region, the new Saaraketha Solar-powered Greenhouse project has a production capability of half a million square feet of controlled environment, entirely solar powered and completely carbon neutral. Projected to carry over 60 varieties of vegetables, greens and herbs, the Saaraketha Solar-powered Greenhouse Project will be able to deliver stable crops all year round, ensuring a consistent income for the farmers and fixed prices for the customers.
With global weather patterns constantly changing and becoming more and more unpredictable and unreliable, it is more important than ever to invest in Sri Lanka’s self-sufficiency and improving our food security. And with increased understanding and awareness of the damage that pesticides do to both the environment and to our health, it is also the time to focus on crops and production that is genuinely good for us and planet earth, with no corners cut and with complete transparency.
Saaraketha has always led the way to ensuring traceability and transparency, launching their plant to plate tracing technology in 2019, and now they want to take it a step further. With their founder Prasanna Hettiarachchi at the helm, they are taking on the impressive task of transforming Sri Lankan agriculture by exploring ways to harness the power of technology to ensure that farmers livelihoods are improved and their ability to feed the nation is stabilized.
From day one, Saaraketha has been committed to the farmers of Sri Lanka. It is their stories, their experiences and their ambitions that have inspired Saaraketha to create the platform that they have over the last 9 years. And even now the Saaraketha Solar-powered Greenhouse Project is powered 80% by female farmers, all working with Saaraketha to bring excellence to our families while uplifting their own families’ futures.
To date organic in Sri Lanka was considered the privilege of the few, always the healthy but highly costly option. Normal families would prioritise their children and buy organic only for them, but that need not be the case anymore. With the Saaraketha Greenhouse Project, the prices of vegetables, greens and herbs are reducing by 50%. Not as a one off, or a sale, but for good. From October onwards, internationally accredited, “Certified Organic” produce will be available online at www.saaraketha.com and all supermarket retailers from October onwards.