The Kroger Co. and 80 Acres Farms, a global vertical farming company, are expanding their partnership to serve about 1,000 of the grocer’s stores across the Midwest and Southeast.
The company grows pesticide-free produce – including salad blends, herbs and tomatoes – indoors using fewer natural resources. It operates production farms in Ohio and Kentucky, as well as research facilities in Arkansas and The Netherlands.
80 Acres’ newest farm in Florence, Kentucky, which began operating in December, will supply about 40 million servings of produce annually. It has another next-generation farm set to open in Georgia, with more locations on the way.
Kroger is bringing 80 Acres’ produce to new geographies, including Michigan, Tennessee and Georgia, and continuing into the Mid-Atlantic and Delta regions in the fall.
“80 Acres’ unique approach and technology enables us to offer fresh, nutritious produce to our customers while advancing sustainable growing practices,” said Dan De La Rosa, Kroger’s group VP of fresh merchandising.
“Together, we’ll expand the reach of these long-lasting and great-tasting 80 Acres Farms items year-round.”
Mike Zelkind, co-founder and CEO of 80 Acres, heralded the expansion.
“Retailers have long been attracted to indoor farming because of its potential to supply fresh, healthy and great-tasting produce in a more environmentally sustainable and resilient manner,” he said.
“Kroger recognizes the importance of vertical farming in our nation’s future food supply chain and the value we deliver by offering differentiated products that customers love.”
Read more produce news from The Shelby Report.