CHARLESTON, S.C. — Vertical Roots
, a hydroponic container farm that grows leafy greens year-round, opened its third indoor farm in Atlanta, Ga., this month. The company partnered with two Southeastern produce suppliers, Collins Brothers Produce and Phoenix Wholesale Foodservice, to place the farm directly at their facilities. The new Atlanta farm site should eliminate the need for produce transportation to the distributor and allow Vertical Roots lettuce to be delivered to local customers the same day it's harvested.
Vertical Roots grows hydroponic lettuce 365 days a year inside indoor farms manufactured from upcycled shipping containers. Vertical Roots' new Atlanta farm site is located alongside Collins Brothers Produce, eliminating produce transportation from the farm to distributor and bringing Vertical Roots lettuce to local customers the same day it’s harvested.
Located within the Atlanta State Farmers Market, this is phase one of the company's Atlanta expansion. With farm production underway, Vertical Roots Georgia Grown lettuce will be available in grocery stores in July 2021.
Vertical Roots' mission is to revolutionize the ways communities grow, distribute and consume food, the company said. Farming directly at distribution hubs is a part of Vertical Roots' strategy to eliminate a massive leg of produce transportation in order to reduce emissions and provide communities with fresh, locally-grown produce.
The new Atlanta farm site should reduce produce transportation an estimated 300 miles per delivery, and will help meet the company's retail demand that services thousands of grocery stores across the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic, as well as restaurants, universities and schools.
"A large part of our mission is to grow food as close to the point of consumption as possible, and this farm site accomplishes just that," said Andrew Hare, co-founder and general manager of Vertical Roots. "The Collins family are esteemed produce industry leaders for three generations, and we're ecstatic about the unique grower-supplier partnership that we've cultivated."
"At Collins Brothers and Phoenix Wholesale, we've had the privilege to work with dedicated farmers across the country for decades," David Collins, president of Collins Brothers & Phoenix Wholesale Foodservice, said. "We're thrilled to partner with Vertical Roots as they bring an innovative way of farming to the agriculture industry. We look forward to this relationship as we share a like-minded mission in providing our customers with high quality, fresh, local produce."