New investments to community may help to build for the future
By SCOT PEARSON
SOUTH BEND - Momentum Investments has come to South Bend and is looking to make a change for the future.
Rick Meyer, front man for Momentum Investments has purchased the old Fraternal Order of Eagles (Pacific Aerie 1443 F.O.E) Building in South Bend and is looking to make several investments in the community that may be as far reaching as helping to feed the world hungry.
"We looked at several locations before coming to Pacific County," said Meyer. "And based on all the elements we were looking for, this area suited us the best."
Momentum has their sights on several aspects of manufacturing from water to agriculture with tomatoes and leaf plants to the newest popular investment, marijuana.
Utilizing his own medical marijuana garden as a pilot program for technologies that he is looking to adopt, a new closed-loop water system will be one of the first improvements that he will be looking at.
"We hope to start construction on green houses in the near future, that is after we have settled on the water system."
One of the many prongs of Momentum Investments is finding the best water solution that they can manage that will allow them to grow hydroponics plants.
"We are only utilizing about 25,000 gallons of water a month," said Meyer, but with the estimated expansion into 16 green houses for tomato and leaf vegetables in the very near future, the area will quickly be putting a stress on municipal water systems like South Bend and Raymond.
Realizing the situation and with the recent requests already from the seafood industry in the Harbor, Meyer is looking to kill two birds with one stone.
"The system that we are looking at will process about 20,000 gallons of water a day."
With their greenhouses running off a closed-loop system that draws the used water from the gardens and recycles it back to clean fresh water, the gardens will almost be self-sustaining. Meyer explains that the system takes in only 10% of its capacity in fresh water daily, thus not placing an added stress to municipal systems and would be more like an average residential customer as opposed to an industrial customer. He further explained that the system could also produce extra water outside of the requirements needed for cultivating vegetables, that could be put to use for other services.
"There are many features that a system like this can have, it can also be set for desalination. So you could grow a garden in almost any remote area," said Meyer.
The group also in vision that their current location will be set up as a farmers market in an old mercantile fashion.
"We will have a full kitchen and hope that we will be able to provided things like sandwiches and salads, things like that. It will be called Willapa Valley Farms."
It is no doubt that the vegetables will be Willapa Valley Farm fresh as the green houses are set to be in the Willapa Harbor area hopefully by the harvest of 2017.
Momentum Investments are also seeking a recreational producer/processor license and see that happening by the end of the year.
The group will be able to offer many medical aspects to the recreational market, like higher CBD strains that are being sought after and infused products like pasta, among other items. Their producer /processor license is estimated at a Tier II producer/processor. With funding coming to a close the hope is that the new water system will be in place by this November. Just in time for the States final inspection to hopefully grant them marijuana acreage.
"The first green house will be for marijuana, and we will build to the vegetable gardens," noted Meyer.
It is the concept to create a project in one industry, grab technology that will enhance that project and possibly become marketable into a separate industry, and then finance growth into the larger issue, helping to replace pending food shortages.
With areas like the Sacramento Valley in California experiencing drought issues, production of common market produce may be impacted.
"The ultimate goal I think for us is the creation of the food greenhouses," said Meyer.
Currently similar produce operations have seen the growth of tomato plants exceeding 16-foot ceilings. And the theory has been proven at least on a smaller scale.
The intent for Momentum Investments is that they will run with the market and wherever that may led them.
"This Valley could produce like Sacramento Valley growing hydroponics," said Meyer.