Farmers from Square Roots — a Brooklyn-based urban farming accelerator program co-founded by Kimbal Musk (brother of Elon) — are now delivering their produce to local offices.
The farmers are growing greens inside 10 steel shipping container farms. Unlike traditional outdoor farms, these vertical farms grow soil-free crops indoors and under LED lights.
While Square Roots mainly sells greens at farmer’s markets in New York City, in late February, the accelerator started delivering directly as part of a weekly subscription service for companies in the area, including Vice Media, Kickstarter, and WeWork. According to Metro, subscribers can order bags of Square Roots greens online, and the farmers will drop them off. One bag costs $US7 per week, and a seven-pack costs $US35.
The farmers have experimented with a number of business models since their first harvest in January. With the new delivery service, they are hoping to meet consumers where they are, Square Roots’ cofounder, Tobias Peggs, tells Business Insider.
“What the farmers heard time and time again was that a lot of people in New York wanted local food, and wanted to play their part in the real food revolution — but they only ate at home once or twice per week,” he says.
In fall 2016, Peggs and Musk launched Square Roots — one of Musk’s many food ventures. For over a decade, he has run two restaurant chains, The Kitchen and Next Door, which serve dishes made strictly with locally-sourced meat and veggies. In 2011, he started a nonprofit program that has installed “Learning Gardens” in over 300 schools, with the intention of teaching kids about agriculture.
Square Roots hopes to expand to 20 cities by 2020.