Inside a greenhouse on the rooftop of a Whole Foods

When Gotham Greens was founded in 2009, its CEO Viraj Puri said there were no commercial-scale sustainable greenhouses, like urban hydroponic and vertical farms, in the US yet. These types of greenhouses are more recent than traditional greenhouses and are experiencing significant growth, he said. Hydroponic greenhouses grow plants without soil.

At a dinner with his eventual co-founder of Gotham Greens, Eric Haley, and Jenn Frymark, now the chief greenhouse officer, Puri said they learned the basil on their pasta had been flown in from Israel.

"At that moment, we knew that there was a clear need and purpose for our proposed business model of building farms closer to population centers," Puri said. After doing more research, they learned that most leafy greens grown in the US come from California and Arizona.

"After traveling thousands of miles east, it's at least a week old and leaves a significant mark on the environment through carbon emissions and food waste along the supply chain," Puri said.

Read more at businessinsider.com


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