Today, tech-savvy urban farming experts Square Roots and food distribution giant Gordon Food Service announced that the location of their partnership’s first urban farm campus will be in Wyoming, Michigan. The two companies announced their exclusive partnership earlier this month, citing a mutual desire to address a growing demand for locally grown food at scale throughout the United States and Canada.
Square Roots is on an urban agriculture mission. In refurbished shipping containers, the company works to provide vertically grown, non-GMO, pesticide-free herbs to their local community. And until now, the company has worked solely out of Brooklyn, New York.
In addition to producing tasty locally grown herbs, the company also trains farmers – working to enable and educate youth with its Next-Gen Farmer Training Program. Square Roots’ training program is something it is taking with them in their expansion, with recruiting starting this summer to hire a new class of farmers for the year-long program at the Michigan farm campus.
The new flagship farm campus will be constructed within the Gordon Food Service’s headquarters, with plans for ten specially designed Square Roots shipping containers to serve for direct production, and four more designated for operational support – occupying a total of less than two acres of the 50-acre site. Out of these, Square Roots expects to produce more than 50,000 pounds of herbs per year.
“This partnership means we will grow delicious, local, real food at huge scale,” said Tobias Peggs, co-founder and CEO of Square Roots. “We’re so happy to be working with a mission-aligned partner in Gordon Food Service – leveraging technology to bring real food to a huge number of people across the country, while delivering real social impact by empowering thousands of young people to become our country’s future farmers.”
Construction of the first container farm campus should conclude by this fall, with the growing to begin immediately after. Both commercial chefs and consumers will be able to purchase the forthcoming herbs at Gordon Food Service’s area retail stores. This flagship urban farm is expected to be the first of many more that the companies have planned for the US and Canadian distribution centers. Here’s to more locally grown produce!