Russia’s Top Vegetable Producer Eyes $625mn China Project

Eco-Culture, Russia’s biggest vegetable producer, has agreed to create a greenhouse complex on the area of 250 hectares (ha) in China, business newspaper Kommersant writes.

The project holds a price tag of $625 million and will be financed by China’s state company Huafa Group. Eco-Culture will be engaged in the administration of business, allowing the holding to study the market ahead of launching exports of its goods to China, the newspaper reports.

The holding’s president and co-owner Alexander Rudakov told the paper that Huafa would bankroll the project, while Eco-Culture would oversee the construction and be in charge of business administration. The Lipetsk greenhouse complex plant will be the building partner and supplier of materials for the project.

The first leg of the compound in Guangdong, South China, located on an area of nearly 20 ha, will be launched by late 2019, the company said.

Tamara Reshetnikova, director of growth technologies at Eco-Culture, estimates that the construction of the greenhouse complex will be worth up to 2.5 million euro per 1 ha. The first leg of the project may cost 50 million euro, and the price tag of the entire complex may come to $625 million.

According to Rudakov, tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce could be grown at the location. At the first stage, the vegetables will be only supplied to the Chinese market, he said.

The entire complex is expected to produce between 125,000 tons of tomatoes and 150,000 tons of cucumbers per year.

These products will be in high demand in China, Reshetnikova said, adding that most vegetables in China are grown in wooden greenhouses, which cannot ensure year-round production and proper control over quality and safety.