August 24, 2017 – Future Farm Technologies Inc. (the “Company” or “Future Farm”) (CSE: FFT) (OTCQB: FFRMF) announces an update with respect to its Baltimore farm. As previously announced, Future Farm signed a LOI to lease 25,000-sq ft of commercial space from Volunteers of America (“VOA”) Chesapeake to accommodate a vertical farm in Baltimore, MD, which will distribute high value healthy produce to local area retail stores, restaurants, institutional non-profits and other buyers. The Company is pleased to announce that the facility’s design and budget are now complete and a second location will double the size of the project to almost 50,000-sq ft and speed up the development.
The Company expects to gain site control of the second location in Baltimore within the next 7-10 days. This particular site is more accommodating to the Company’s controlled environment agriculture (“CEA”) technology requirements and requires less construction build-out. It is expected that this second location will be operational sooner than the original location and will therefore become Phase 1 of the Baltimore project.
As previously announced, Craig Stanley and CBO Financial will act as the Company’s financial advisor with respect to New Market Tax Credits (NMTC) and will be arranging for $5,000,000 in NMTC-based financing for each phase of the Baltimore farms. The NMTC program is a $65 billion federal program designed to incentivize private investment in low-income communities. NMTCs are provided to financial institutions in exchange for equity investments that eligible businesses can use to subsidize project development costs. CBO Financial helps driven organizations, such as Future Farm, to finance facilities that will provide goods and services that benefit populations in need and revitalize communities.
“We are pleased to be working with CBO Financial and Volunteers of America Chesapeake on these projects and believe that their success will be a bellwether for public-private partnerships within the urban farming industry,” says Mr. William Gildea, Future Farm’s CEO and Chairman. “Our goal was always to create impactful social and corporate programs that are mutually beneficial for all involved, from the community, to the Company and our shareholders. Partnering with Volunteers of America and CBO Financial puts us in the position to achieve that goal.”
“This approach to urban agriculture and community development is truly visionary and we are proud to be involved with such a meaningful project,” says Tony Azola, General Contractor for Volunteers of America.
The primary objectives of both farms remain the same — establish economical and environmentally friendly vertical farms; provide job training opportunities (specifically to the VOA’s reentry program for ex-offenders in Baltimore, MD) as well as to the local community; provide therapeutic programs, which will be expanded to the disabled population; support entrepreneurship development; and establish a model for replication at other reentry and social services facilities.
One of the primary objectives of the projects is to provide opportunities to develop therapeutic programs involving all aspects of planting, growing/nurturing, harvesting and selling plants. The American Horticultural Therapy Association (AHTA) defines “Horticultural Therapy” as the “engagement of a person in gardening and plant-based activities, facilitated by a trained therapist, to achieve specific therapeutic treatment goals.” AHTA believes that Horticultural Therapy (HT) is an active process, which occurs in the context of an established treatment plan where the process itself is considered the therapeutic activity rather than the end product. The therapeutic benefits of garden environments have been documented since ancient times. Today, HT is accepted as a beneficial and effective therapeutic modality and is widely used within a broad range of rehabilitative, vocational, and community settings. HT helps improve memory, cognitive abilities, task initiation, language skills, and socialization. In physical rehabilitation, HT can help strengthen muscles and improve coordination, balance, and endurance. In vocational HT settings, people learn to work independently, problem solve, and follow directions.
For further information, contact William Gildea, Director, at 617.834.9467.
On behalf of the Board,
Future Farm Technologies Inc.
William Gildea, CEO & Chairman
About Future Farm
The Company’s business model includes developing and acquiring technologies that will position it as a leader in the evolution of Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) for the global production of various types of plants. Future Farm provides scalable, indoor CEA systems that utilize minimal land, water and energy regardless of climate, location or time of year and are customized to grow an abundance of crops close to consumers, therefore minimizing food miles and its impact to the environment. The Company holds an exclusive, worldwide license to use a patented vertical farming technology that, when compared to traditional plant production methods, generate yields up to 10 times greater per square foot of land. The contained system provides many other benefits including seed to sale security, scalability, consistency due to year-round production, cost control, product safety and purity by eliminating environmental variability.
The Company is also in the business of designing and distributing LED lighting solutions utilizing the COB and MCOB technology. The Company is focused on delivering cost efficient lighting to North America via advanced e-commerce sites the Company owns and operates. LEDCanada.com which caters to B2B customers is a supplier of the newest and highest demand LED solutions. The Company also owns and operates COBGrowlights.com which caters to both large and small agriculture green houses and controlled cultivation centers.