Intelligent Sustainability Frameworks: A Case Study

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By Naveed Qazi | Editor, Globe Up Front

Sustainability is a process which can add value to ecosystems and society as a whole. It is now a debate of the modern economy. Not only this can drive brand equity of a firm to new heights, but it can also provide competence based on the ethical consent of the shareholders of the company and stakeholders of the society.

I have cited a case study example of Sundrop Farms because their recent sustainability initiatives have been acclaimed by the Australian public domain and policy makers due to its commitment in regional South Australia.

The competitive advantage which the company enjoys is the abundant sunshine and seawater resources which are used for electric power generation and cultivation.

The solar power system of Sundrop Farms has been developed by Danish turnkey contractors, Aalborg CSP along with John Holland, after auditing all the economic and technological liabilities. The integrated solar plant is based on tower technology which is capable of heating the greenhouse in the winter time and in cold summer nights to provide desalinating water.

By far Sundrop Farms have been successful in expanding their products to Australian supermarkets like Coles, who will shelve their sustainable tomato brand for the next ten years in their 350 stores all around Australia.

Very recently, the company got a $100 million dollar investment based on their goodwill by a private equity firm for growing tomatoes in the desert of South Australia in Port Augusta, using cutting-edge solar energy. It is claimed to be world's first technology where a tomato farm will be on an open salt flat.

The 8-hectare farm will produce 2.8 million kg of tomatoes and 1.2 million kgs of pepper while saving 8 million barrels of oil and 280 million litres of fresh water in a similar eco-friendly production location. The project realisation is viewed as a socially responsible investment by many and will likely create 300 jobs for the local community.

In 2012, Sundrop Farms planned a strategic alliance with Sahara Forest Project, a company praised by UN and EU bodies that have launched successful projects in Qatar and Jordan based on Norwegian investments. Before the alliance, Sundrop's partner was supposedly its rival because they were running a similar project a year before in 2009, which was unveiled in a Copenhagen conference.

The strategy of Sundrop Farms is basically to promote green investment initiatives in hot arid regions. Only a year before in 2014, the company incorporated its Middle East headquarters in the United Arab Emirates at Dubai International Financial Centre, where it lead a project management team and some greenhouse operation experts. The company is also seeking to invest in a project with a similar environment in the United States.

The company claims to grow crops in state of the art glass chambers to address food and security issues in desert regions, which has attracted the attention of various investors interested in food security. There is also a new project approved in Saudi Arabia through the same system.

The company is likely working with a positive attitude because they can produce crops all the year round, without worrying about the weather, soil quality and seasons.

Intelligent Sustainability Frameworks create new resources from waste management using technology and evaporative desalination system for irrigation to warm the greenhouse. An example of Sundrop Farms has created an interesting stir on the debate for sustainability.

(For Directgreen)


  1. Sundrop looks to be a promising player in sustainable agriculture - attracting powerful investors and partners with its rare combination of sustainability, growth potential and economic viability.
    Nice work, Naveed! I'll link you the short piece I wrote on Sundrop today or tomorrow!

  2. It was a bit of fun doing research on it. Reminded me of my dissertation months at Grad School.

    Will be happy to read your stuff on it.


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