AME Certified PCR Laboratories (AME) supports the profitability enhancement of next-generation of farmers who are engaging Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) food production technologies.
CEA stakeholders are committed to innovative, state-of-the-art approaches to low CAPEX and OPEX systems, climate-smart, best growing practices, and sustainable agriculture.
CEA, along with other low/high-tech food production solutions, are systems which adapt to volatile climate change and market conditions while reducing operating costs while enhancing global food security.
AME supports CEA with on-site testing facilities (full environmental control and supplemental lighting greenhouse) operated by in-house personnel to screen for food and plant pathogens with fast, certified test results.
In-house testing incorporated in a "test and release" model benefits consumers and customers, regulation, suppliers and stakeholders by supporting the promise of bacterially safe food for human consumption.
Our Food safety consulting services include:
• FDA regulatory compliance
• Risk assessment
• Audit readiness assessments (HACCP, FSMA plan)
• Sanitation program development
• Gap Analysis for CEA food safety and quality programs
The AME CEA Alliance Board supports Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) producers to increase of revenues and decrease operational costs through innovations in technology, methods, managerial advances the market demands so profits grow, year over year.
The advantages of the commercial-scale CEA industry are:
• Year-round production with up to 17 annual harvests
• Shorter time from seed to harvest with optimized growth cycles
-Not limited by the traditional, seasonal number of crop turns in outdoor grows
• Production not directly affected by weather and temperature events
• Uses less water than traditional farming
-No loss to evaporation or runoff
-All water is captured and re-used
• Close proximity to city centers, capable of feeding thousands of urbanites
-Lower transportation costs as compared to long-haul arrangements
-Urban buyers are enticed by local producers as a preference
-Outdoor real estate for traditional growing is reduced due to climate change
• Improved supply chain enablement
• Focused unit economics based on technology advancements
-High-yield, low-cost modular machineries
-Proven, efficient systems based on innovative greenhouse horticulture
• Greater resistance to pest infestation (Limited or no pesticides)
-Releasing of beneficial insects
-Preventive foliar applications
• Renewable, solar energy reduces power grid usage and costs
• Controlled air venting and exhausting to improve production
• CO2 injection venting for increased crop growth metrics
• High-pressure sodium (HPS) lamps for supplemental lighting
• Low electricity-consumption LED systems in focused nm ranges for each plant species
-Intensity (in µmol·m-2·s-1); Uniformity, Cost; Efficacy (in µmol·J-1)
• Scientifically modifying the light spectrum to increase plant seedling growth by species
• Consumers choose, appreciate, and prefer delicious, premium products of CEA growers
• Vendors can provide consistent supplier agreements assisting by minimizing supply chain shortages to:
- Baby cos lettuces
• Leafy greens
• Vine crops
• Medicinal cannabis
• Flowering crops
• Fodder for livestock feed
• Apple trees
• Novel, game-changing agri-genomic enhanced plant varieties
-Drought and disease resilient
-Climate adaptable to maximize yields
-Improved growth yields
Indoor Soil Growing:
-Coconut fiber (coil)
-Rockwool (a material similar to an insulation batt with a channel of underneath water)
-Grodan AO Plug
-Grodan Cress Plate
-Without soil as a medium
-70% and 90% saving compared to conventional farming
-Continuous water filtration and disinfection
-N.F.T. (Nutrient Film Technique)
-Ebb & Flow (also known as Flood & Drain)
-Water Culture (also known as Deep Water Culture)
Indoor Vertical Farming
-Multi-level shelf production
-Stackable vertical farming modules (Container)
-Water sprayed with a nutrient solution mist
-Roots of the plant are suspended in air
-Uses 90% less water than some hydroponic systems
-Suspended root system in the air
-Water droplets/vapor (mist)
-Delivered to the stems, leaves and roots
-Aquaculture (raising fish) and hydroponic
-Fast growing fish
-Tilapia, perch, catfish, trout, etc.
-Water can then be recycled back to the fish
Automated Planting and Processing
-From seeding to bagging
Turnkey CEA Operation Setups
- Full Project Management
Food Safety Compliance
-Good Agricultural Practices (GAP)
-Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP)
-Food Testing for human pathogens
-E. coli (EHEC)
• Almost 50% of new growers have no experience in agriculture, not valuing the difficulty of farming (Novices don't know what they don't know)--such as the operational challenges of keeping plants healthy and vigorous. They lack the depth of business experience and insufficient market research preparing to bring an ag operation to scale and maintain sufficient financial performance. Initial production methods, designs, technologies are flawed to generate immediate, sustainable profit. Often these factors result in big promises about ROI with unrealized conculsions.
• 68% of growers are salad green growers.
• 29% of respondents receive funding from multiple sources
( https://blog.autogrow.com/global-cea-census-report-shows-continued-positivity-despite-covid-19 )
• Commercial editors comment that vertical, indoor farming operational revenues, costs, and profits or losses should be compared against modern, high-tech hydroponic greenhouses, rather than conventional, open field outdoor grow operations.
Seed sanitization via chemical processes removes/reduces microbes from the external surfaces of the seed and thereby could have an impact on the plants’ health or productivity.
Pre-planting seed sanitizing methods can be engaged to prevent seed-borne human and plant pathogens and diseases, especially those caused by bacteria and viruses infecting the surfaces of the seeds.
The objective is to:
• Minimize the potential risks of the pathogens infecting the new plant growth
• Prevent bacterial pathogens (E. coli, Salmonella, Listeria) from cross-contamination
• Prevent yeasts and molds, and plant pathogens
• All seed sanitization methods should sanitize while maintaining the life force of the seeds
Seed treatment with specific concentrations of Peracetic acid prior to planting
Benchtop seed sanitization system for seed according to FDA FSMA standards (J. Fungi 2021, 7, 650.
The AME seed surface disinfection system reduces the relative CFU formation with non-thermal plasma
treatment thus reducing human and plant pathogens on the seed surfaces (crop science, vol. 54, march–april 2014 )
Andy Moreno, PhD
Bacterial Surveillance Systems Engineer
AME Certified Laboratories
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