Infarm has opened what it says is one of the 'largest vertical farming facilities' in Europe, in Bedford in the UK, which covers around 10,000 square metres.
The facility, the group's first high-capacity growing centre pin the UK, incorporates 40 cloud-connected farming units, each of which is ten metres high and has the capability of growing more than 500,000 plants per year.
“The Infarm Growing Centre in Bedford enables us to increase the amount of fresh produce grown locally in the UK significantly," commented Erez Galonska, CEO and co-founder of Infarm. "Fully equipped we will be able to deliver up to 20 million locally and freshly produced plants to our UK partners every year.
"The opening of this UK facility is aligned with our goal to change the food system for the better by improving the safety, quality and environmental footprint of our food.”
The new site follows on from the recent opening of Infarm's third growing centre in the US, in Columbia, Howard County, Maryland, which opened last week, and has the capability of producing 45 million crops annually.
By the end of 2030, Infarm plans to expand to 20 countries.
In the UK, Infarm's herbs and leafy greens are available at Whole Foods Market, Selfridges, Marks & Spencer, Fortnum & Mason, Budgens, as well as at the online retailer Getir. Its products can also be tasted at selected restaurants in London, including Pied a Terre, Sabor and Hide.
Boost Food Production
Commenting on the opening of the Bedford site, UK minister for agri-innovation and climate adaptation Jo Churchill said, "We want to be world leaders when it comes to innovation; our Food Strategy is committed to boost food production in sectors including horticulture, and we are spending £270 million on unlocking innovation in agriculture.
"With each unit having the potential to grow over 500,000 plants per year, Infarm is a great example of innovation being used to enhance productivity – and I am delighted to support the opening of this facility today.”
© 2022 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest fresh produce news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.