Infarm announced that it has raised $200 million in a Series D funding round. The investment included participation from existing and new investors, including the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), which will support the company's expansion to countries in the Middle East.
Entering the Middle East
Erez Galonska, co-founder and CEO of InFarm, told VerticalFarmDaily: “We’re entering a new region, the Middle East, as they have big challenges in food security as well as resources, such as water. Infarm is expanding to this region as we believe our vertical farming technology offers a good solution to increase growing local fresh produce. Doing so by cultivating for them with our growing centers will help the region to become self-sufficient in their food production."
As Erez explains, exciting things are happening in the next year(s). Infarm will be deploying farms in the Middle East and starting to set the infrastructure in 2022. Then, they aim to start cultivating in 2023 in the region, starting in Qatar.
The plan is to go deeper into the region and fill it up with additional Infarm Growing Centers. Erez says he is very excited about showcasing how vertical farming and Infarm’s modular farming units can start giving an answer to the current cultivation problems in the Middle East.
Shiitake, grown inside Infarm's Growing Center
Extending product basket
On top of the over 1000 in-store farms that are present already, the company will continue to grow herbs and leafy greens in their farming units so supermarkets can become self-sufficient. 40 different varieties of products will be added to the fruit and vegetable basket, such as cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, strawberries, peppers, and new leafy greens and herbs.
Erez adds, “We want to grow beyond herbs and leafy greens in order to execute our long-term vision. The funding brings us closer to the vision of providing the entire fruit and vegetable basket to more stores and customers globally. The funding round is taking us closer to our mission to continue to implement our modules worldwide.”
“We believe we can grow the entire food and vegetable basket to play a big role in feeding the world. Therefore, the company will continue to globally expand the existing network in several countries with existing clients.”
An InFarm growing center
His Excellency Mansoor bin Ebrahim Al-Mahmoud, CEO of QIA, said: “QIA aims to have a positive impact through all our investments. We continue to increase our exposure to innovators globally and we are actively targeting themes including the climate transition and technology.
“As a responsible, long-term investor, QIA’s purpose is to create value for future generations. We see vertical farming as a way to enhance food security in every part of the world. We look forward to working with Infarm to develop their first Growing Center in Qatar, which will contribute to Qatar’s own food security and economic diversification.”