x

Science

Walmart Invests in Indoor Vertical Farming Startup Plenty

January 25, 2022

NEW YORK — Walmart said Tuesday it has taken a stake in agriculture startup Plenty, becoming the first large US retailer to significantly invest in indoor vertical farming as a way to deliver fresher produce to its stores.

Vertical farmers tout their high-quality produce that brings higher yields while using less water and land. The method also doesn’t use pesticide, and the produce can be grown year round near the point of distribution, increasing the reliability of supply.

Walmart, the nation’s largest retailer, declined to comment on the size of its investment or the financial terms of the deal. But the retailer based in Bentonville, Arkansas, said that it will join Plenty’s board at the close of the transaction.

The deal comes as grocery stores are under pressure to have more environmentally friendly practices. Plenty, based in San Francisco, is one of many players in the fast-growing field of indoor farming. Others include Morehead, Kentucky-based AppHarvest, and New York-based Gotham Greens.

In a recent global survey, consulting firm Agritecture — which works with urban farmers — found that at least 74 indoor farming companies were founded in 2020 alone.

Plenty, which was founded in 2014 and has a vertical farm in South San Francisco, also operates an indoor plant science research facility in Laramie, Wyoming. It is now building in Compton, California, what it says will be the world’s highest output vertical indoor farm, due to open in the second half of this year.

Plenty said its vertical farming towers are designed to grow multiple crops on one platform in a building the size of a big box retail store. Its systems feature vertical plant towers, LED lighting and robots to plant, feed and harvest crops. It says its farms use 1% of the land that an outdoor farm requires while delivering anywhere from 150 to 350 times more food per acre.

Walmart said that under the deal, Plenty’s Compton farm will send leafy greens to Walmart’s California stores beginning later this year. It said the vertical farms will supplement, but won’t replace, traditional farming practices, while helping increase the food supply in a sustainable way.

RELATED

Τhey're a little corny, a little too happy, and way too similar.

Top Stories

Columnists

A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

Video

Warnock or Walker? Georgia Runoff to Settle Last Senate Seat

ATLANTA — Georgia voters on Tuesday are set to decide the final Senate contest in the country, choosing between Democratic Sen.

NEW YORK (AP) — Donald Trump’s company was convicted of tax fraud on Tuesday in a case brought by the Manhattan District Attorney, a significant repudiation of financial practices at the former president’s business.

With Cristiano Ronaldo on the bench, the superstar striker’s replacement scored a hat trick to lead Portugal over Switzerland 6-1 and into the World Cup quarterfinals on Tuesday.

Morocco became the first Arab nation and only the fourth African nation to advance to the World Cup quarterfinals, beating Spain 3-0 in a penalty shootout on Tuesday.

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration is still actively searching for ways to safeguard abortion access for millions of women, even as it bumps up against a complex web of strict new state laws enacted in the months after the Supreme Court stripped the constitutional right.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.