NEWARK, NJ - Vertical farming specialist AeroFarms has broken ground on its second commercial indoor vertical farm in Danville-Pittsylvania County, Virginia.
Coming online in the second quarter of 2022, AeroFarms’ next-generation Model 5 farm will be the largest and most technologically advanced aeroponic indoor vertical farm in the world, according to the company.
Strategically located near more than 1,000 food retailers in the region, the Danville farm will provide access to approximately 50 million people located within a day’s drive. The new farm will expand the company’s leafy greens business to the Mid-Atlantic region with brick-and-mortar retail and e-commerce partners, building upon existing relationships that include Whole Foods Market, ShopRite, Baldor, Amazon Fresh and FreshDirect.
“The science, technology and innovation that underpin our platform allows us to drive superior unit economics and scale up our business to deliver on our mission of growing the best plants possible for the betterment of humanity,” said David Rosenberg, co-founder and chief executive officer of AeroFarms. “Our customers love our leafy greens, which consistently win on quality, flavor, taste and texture. We are excited to break ground on our new farm, expand our retail presence in the region and bring our exceptional, great tasting products to more customers.”
The Danville farm will feature AeroFarms’ agSTACK technology, creating a fully connected and digitally controlled farm that integrates hardware, automation, intelligent controls and sensors, machine learning, machine vision, supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA), and manufacturing execution systems to create a powerful data loop.
By collecting and analyzing data through its 26 crop turns per year, AeroFarms’ team of engineers, plant scientists, and programmers gather insights about plants, and apply these learnings for the continuous improvement of its farms, which yield annual productivity up to 390 times greater than traditional field farming, while using up to 95% less water and zero pesticides, according to the AeroFarms.