North America’s largest indoor vertical farm has partnered with Seed Capital KY to develop a new farm at the West Louisville FoodPort.
LOUISVILLE, KY – (Jan. 28, 2016) — FarmedHere, North America’s largest and longest-running organic indoor vertical farm, today announced plans to open a new location at the West Louisville FoodPort in Louisville, KY. A project of Seed Capital KY, the West Louisville FoodPort is a new development poised to become one of the most transformative urban reinvestment projects of the decade. On a 24-acre campus, the FoodPort will locate food-related businesses in one place where they can buy food from local farmers and hire neighbors for jobs.
In addition, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) today granted FarmedHere preliminary approval for tax incentives up to $400,000 through the Kentucky Business Investment program. This performance-based incentive allows FarmedHere to keep a portion of its approximately $23.5 million investment over the agreement term through corporate income tax credits and wage assessments by meeting job and investment targets. FarmedHere plans to hire 40 new employees in Louisville, many of which will be veterans and second-chance employees.
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said: “FarmedHere’s sustainable practices and compassionate hiring policy make it an ideal community partner in west Louisville. The addition of this innovative company to the West Louisville FoodPort affirms our commitment to giving every citizen an opportunity for a healthy lifestyle by making locally grown food easily accessible.”
FarmedHere CEO Matt Matros said: “This new location will bring us one step closer to reaching our goal of building vertical farms in 18 cities across the country and feeding 75% of the United States’ population. With a projected 9.6 billion people on earth by 2050, alternative forms of agriculture are becoming more important, especially in urban areas where adequate farmland is limited. We are grateful for the support of Seed Capital Kentucky, KEDFA, Governor Bevin, Mayor Fischer and Louisville Forward as we begin the process of creating Louisville’s first commercial-scale vertical farm. ”
The new 60,000-square-foot farm will feature 10 rows of vertical grow beds and dedicated space for sorting and packaging microgreens, herbs, salad dressings, baby food and more. This means Louisville and the approximately 18.2 million people living within 200 miles will have access to freshly harvested, USDA certified organic and pesticide-free produce 365 days a year.
Caroline Heine, co-founder and Project Director of Seed Capital KY said: “This is a fantastic affirmation of the promise of the FoodPort. FarmedHere sees the value of this integrated, public-private-nonprofit partnership, and has chosen to expand its business here, bringing investment, jobs and relationships, and offering a year-round supply of healthy, locally-grown food to our community. We could not be more excited.”
Construction on the West Louisville FoodPort is expected to begin in August 2016.
The largest and longest-running organic vertical farm in the country, Chicago-based FarmedHere has been producing 100% USDA certified organic basil, baby kale, baby cabbage, microgreens and salad dressing since 2011. Over-farming, pollution and drought are making traditional agriculture more and more difficult. FarmedHere’s method of farming is completely pesticide-free and eliminates many of the variables that plague outdoor farming, such as weather, droughts and pest infestations. By growing entirely indoors with energy-efficient LED lights and the ability to sustain a controlled environment, FarmedHere produces 15 times as many crop cycles annually as traditional farming and uses 97% less water. FarmedHere is on a mission to create a more sustainable food future by changing the way Americans get their food. For more information, please visit www.farmedhere.com.
About Seed Capital KY
Seed Capital KY is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization created to catalyze the success and resilience of Kentucky’s regional agriculture and regional food economy. We focus on supporting farmers, and growing the local food system through research, partnerships, and responsible redevelopment. For more information, please visit www.seedcapitalky.org.
About West Louisville FoodPort
The West Louisville FoodPort is poised to become one of the most transformative urban reinvestment projects of the decade. On a 24-acre campus in the Russell neighborhood, the FoodPort is a state-of-the-art landmark that spurs economic activity by locating food-related businesses in one place where they can buy food from local farmers and hire neighbors for jobs. For more information, please visit www.westloufoodport.org. #growtogether
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