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AppHarvest Ships First Harvest Of Tomatoes On The Vine

AppHarvest vine

Last updated on June 13th, 2024 at 12:41 pm

AppHarvest recently shipped its first harvest of Tomatoes on the Vine from its flagship high-tech indoor farm to Kroger grocery stores. This harvest marks the second tomato variety to be distributed to grocery stores since the controlled environment ag company first harvested Beefsteak tomatoes in January.

The Morehead, Kentucky facility, one of the country’s largest high-tech indoor farms, has planted half of the facility’s acreage in the Beefsteak variety and the other half in the Tomatoes on the Vine variety, which are delivering on schedule.

The sustainably grown Tomatoes on the Vine first will be available in Kroger stores, co-branded with Sunset, with pricing expected to be comparable to standard tomatoes. All of AppHarvest’s tomatoes are chemical pesticide-free, non-GMO and are grown with 100 percent recycled rainwater. The company plans to have the tomatoes available on the shelves of other national retailers in the near future.

“Our Beefsteak tomatoes have been a hit with customers since launching in grocery stores this past January, and we expect our Tomatoes on the Vine to be just as in-demand,” said Jonathan Webb, CEO and founder of AppHarvest. “This harvest also has proved the team can handle the production ramp-up at our Morehead facility as we are now using all grow space at the high-tech farm. We’re making good on our mission to build a resilient domestic supply of delicious, nutritious and affordable tomatoes grown sustainably while creating good jobs in an area that needs them.”

Tomatoes on the Vine are sold with the vine still attached, which allows the fruit to absorb additional nutrients from the plant as it continues to ripen. Tomatoes on the Vine are known for their excellent shelf life and ability to remain fresh. The variety is most often used for slicing and salads and as a flavor boost for many recipes. They are a high-yielding variety with exceptionally big fruits and uniform clusters.

AppHarvest continues to leverage the best of nature with sunlight and rainwater at the forefront, supplemented by technology, to deliver sustainably grown produce that’s flavorful and nutritious. Martha Stewart, AppHarvest Board member and food icon, was among the first to test out the company’s Tomatoes on the Vine and was thrilled with implementing them into her dishes like Tomatoes Provencal and Baked Eggs in Whole Roasted Tomatoes.

Tomatoes on the Vine are being grown out of 30 acres of dedicated space at AppHarvest’s 60-acre controlled environment agriculture (CEA) facility in Morehead, which the company purchased earlier in March along with the property on which it is located. The Morehead facility is expected to produce about 45 million pounds of tomatoes annually from about 720,000 tomato plants, a mix of Beefsteak and Tomatoes on the Vine.

Additionally, the company is currently building two additional high-tech controlled environment agriculture facilities in Central Appalachia: a 15-acre facility in Berea, Kentucky, that will focus on growing leafy greens, and a 60-acre facility outside Richmond, Kentucky, expected to grow tomatoes.

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