Last year, after Bob Doyle, owner of North Shore MicroFresh microgreens company, retired from a career in tech, he knew he wanted to try something a whole lot different. “I was looking for a new motivation, something to turn me on again,” he recalls. “Owning my own business, something that’s hyperlocal, good for people, good for the planet, fun, that appealed to me.”
He liked reading about hydroponics and the process of growing food in space for journeys to Mars. Perhaps indoor farming could check his boxes? He experimented with growing greens in vertical gardens known as 'farm walls', but became frustrated with the months of waiting between planting and harvest. With further research, he hit on microgreens.
“I settled on microgreens because it’s simple, it’s really healthy, and it’s got a faster turn-around from planting the seed to harvesting,” he says. “There’s a wide variety of microgreens that you can grow; there are dozens of them.”
He spent weeks studying, experimenting, and watching YouTube videos to figure out how to grow microgreens. Within months, he had launched North Shore MicroFresh and begun delivering microgreens to homes and businesses around the region.
His first customers were friends and family, and his client base quickly expanded through word-of-mouth and social media engagement. He began delivering to homes, bringing 2 oz., 8 oz., and 1 lb. containers weekly to the coolers he asks customers to leave on their porches. Most customers buy 2 oz., which last a long time in the refrigerator and can add flavor to any type of dish as a garnish.
“It’s been a real joy to go up the learning curve and figure out how to be an indoor farmer,” says Doyle. “I like that I’m using my hands to actually make something. I like that it’s a good, healthy product. I like meeting people on the North Shore. I like that it’s clean and local.”
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