GoodLeaf vertical farm now operational in Guelph
September 17, 2020 By Goodleaf Farms
GoodLeaf Farms’ 4,000-square-metre indoor vertical farming facility is now fully commercialized and operational in Guelph, Ont.
First opened in September 2019, the facility has since conducted multiple trials and is now SQF-certified. The farm is fully automated and equipped to grow microgreens and baby greens 365 days a year, without the use of pesticides, herbicides or fungicides and with dramatically less water consumption. According to the company, the result is a safer, more nutrient dense and sustainably grown food source, providing a domestic alternative in produce aisles dominated by imports from the southern United States or Mexico.
“Knowing where their food comes from is important to Canadians,” says Jacquie Needham, Accounts Manager for GoodLeaf Farms. “Our growing system mimics the spring sun without the use of chemicals, releasing farming from the restrictions of the changing seasons. We can grow local, fresh, nutritious and healthy leafy greens for the Ontario produce market all year long — we do it safely.”
Their vertical farming process grows plants with hydroponics under specialized LEDs that concentrates the waves from the light spectrum needed by plants to maximize photosynthesis. This method of farming is cost-effective, suited for the Canadian climate and scalable. Every crop is tested for contaminants before it is shipped, ensuring it is safe for consumers.
GoodLeaf says they use 95 per cent less water than a traditional farm, has no run-off issues or potential contamination of nearby water sources. Being a local facility eliminates thousands of kilometers of transportation from the supply chain and more food can be grown per acre, reducing land-use pressures.
GoodLeaf currently has four microgreens and two baby greens available in Ontario including micro-arugula, pea shoots, baby kale and baby arugula, among others.
“The pandemic has underscored how important it is to have access to local food sources – food that we know is safe, grown responsibly and immune to border closures,” says Ms. Needham. “Compared to a green that was grown thousands of miles away, packed onto a hot truck and shipped across the continent, our process is far superior. Local food is simply better — better for you, better for the environment and better for our economy.”
GoodLeaf was first founded in Halifax in 2011 and has ongoing R&D Programs in collaboration with the University of Guelph, Dalhousie University and Acadia University.
SOURCE: GoodLeaf Farms
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