Edmonton International Airport (EIA) is set to be the North American entry point and logistics hub for a China-based Plant Box, a company specialising in LED lighting systems for indoor plant growth.
An agreement was signed Wednesday between Edmonton International Airport and Plant Box, which will use EIA’s Airport City as its main base for manufacturing and distribution in North America.
“We looked at multiple venues across North America for this investment and determined that the Edmonton Metro Region and EIA was the perfect fit to be our north American home,” says Steve Loo, executive director of Plant Box in China.
“EIA offers several advantages not seen at other airports and we hope this will be the start of a long and successful relationship for our company in North America,” Loo adds.
Plant Box will initially market to small and medium-sized commercial operators and post-secondary and academic institutions across North America that specialise in indoor plant growth, in particular those working in the cannabis sector. Retail sales targeted at consumers may be possible in the future.
“This is a perfect example of how Airport City works,” said Myron Keehn, EIA vice president of Air Service and Commercial Development. “Plant Box will import materials and build technology which will increase the production of agricultural products for export from North America.”
Plant Box chose EIA for its investment because it is the most northern major airport in North America that operates 24/7 and can provide direct circumpolar access to and from Asian markets. It is well positioned to operate as a gateway into North America for air cargo access from Asia and distribute across North America from its proximity to major rail and highway infrastructure.
Plant Box will also benefit from reduced trade barriers thanks to Western Economic Diversification’s establishment of a Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) Point at EIA. Plant Box will initially lease existing warehouse space at EIA for its manufacturing centre.
“We welcome Plant Box’s contribution to communities seeking healthy and reliable food production methods,” said Malcolm Bruce, CEO of Edmonton Global. “The global connections that will be developed in this project will further strengthen our already impressive regional logistics and manufacturing sectors and will generate jobs across the Edmonton Metropolitan Region.”
Sinoinnovo Tech, parent of Plant Box, was founded in 2011. Headquartered in China’s Dongguan City the company focuses on green tech solutions.