As we all know, the impact of the coronavirus pandemic is growing day by day due to which there is a high rise in demand for fresh foods. It has put a global spotlight on the agricultural side of the economy. However, agritech startups are constantly trying to succeed, despite all the challenges, with the help of indoor farming to help cities become self-sufficient in their food production while improving the safety, quality, and environmental footprint of the food.
One such startup, Infarm, aims to share the goodness of own-grown produce with everyone. The startup has developed a smart modular farming system, that allows the distribution of farms throughout the urban environment, growing fresh produce in any available space and fulfilling any demand.
The Berlin-based startup has raised €144 M in the “first close” of a Series C round of funding; the round is expected to reach about €168 M. LGT Lightstone led this round of investment in a mix of equity and debt financing.
Besides existing investors Atomico, TriplePoint Capital, Mons Capital, and Astanor Ventures; Hanaco, Bonnier, Haniel, and Latitude have also invested in this round.
Utilisation of the Investment
The funding will be used to strengthen the regional and local penetration of Infarm’s global farming network. Besides, the startup is also looking to develop its vertical cloud-connected farms to help generate the crop-equivalent of acres of farmland to increase the diversity of produce through vertical farming.
What does Infarm do?
Founded in 2013 by Osnat Michaeli, and brothers Erez and Guy Galonska, Infarm uses cloud-computing to manage the cultivation of produce that is grown close to consumers, to minimise its environmental impact.
With a team of 600 people globally, Infarm has partnered with more than 30 major food retailers.
The startup also claims to have deployed more than 1000 farms in stores and distribution centres, saved more than 7,000,000 gallons of water, and 400,000 square feet of land, while harvesting over 500,000 plants monthly and growing.
To help contribute to a more sustainable food system, Infarm is looking to integrate its advanced engineering and software & farming technology, to help save labour, land, water, energy, and food-miles.
By 2025, Infarm’s farming network is expected to reach more than 5,000,000 square feet.
Speaking about the development, Erez Galonska, co-founder & CEO of Infarm, said: “We believe in increasing access to fresh, pure, sustainable produce, grown as close as possible to people. As we scale to 5,000,000 sq ft in farming facilities across Europe, North American and Asia by 2025, this investment will help us make a truly global impact through our network, preserving the thousands of acres of land, millions of liters of water, and ultimately change the way people grow, eat and think about food.”
Image credits: InFarm