Phytelligence – Proud Partner Of WSU
The PKC Advantage
The Palouse Knowledge Corridor (PKC), book-marked by Washington State University and the University of Idaho, promotes the intellectual and creative capital associated with these land-grant, research universities and high-tech industries in the region. That synergy has, in turn, created the conditions for vibrant entrepreneurial growth on the Palouse. Phytelligence, recently named to GeekWire’s Seattle 10, is a product of the PKC ecosystem and has roots reaching into Washington State University’s Pullman campus.
Research Groundwork Fuels Market Success
Founded in 2012 by Dr. Amit Dhingra, associate professor of horticultural genomics and biotechnology at WSU, Phytelligence is an agricultural biotechnology company that developed micropropagation protocols, techniques and software to produce rootstocks, fruit trees and grapevines faster and cheaper than traditional nursery methods and ensured their correct identity through high-resolution genetic fingerprinting.
Their MultiPHY™ tissue culture process delivers lower-cost, higher-quality plants for growers. When traditional nurseries, receive the wrong plant variety, increased mortality, shorter growth time and weaker plant material multiply rising costs and production losses. Phytelligence plants have less than 1 percent mortality rate, compared to the 10-40 percent experienced by many growers. Plants supplied to growers are virus-free with full intact root systems that require less water, fungicides, and pesticides.
“The company’s plant multiplication method can produce 250,000 plants in one year from a single plant in five-week intervals,” says Preeti Malik-Kale, Ph.D., Technology Licensing Associate in WSU’s Office of Commercialization. “DNA testing prior to shipment guarantees the authenticity of the fruit tree or plant species being supplied to growers.”
Innovations Allow Rapid Responses To Market Changes
Phytelligence can scale and ramp new varieties faster than anyone else in the industry, getting plants into growers hands quickly. Their current plant repository includes varieties of apple, cherry, grape, pear, blueberry, strawberry, hops and raspberry.
Now headquartered in Seattle, Phytelligence has facilities in Burien and Pullman, Washington and Portland, Oregon. With 75 employees, it continues to grow and serve about 30 customers and can produce 29 million plants annually in its Tigard, OR facility.