Abundance Investment has launched an offer to invest in ‘OneFarm’, a company on a mission to transform the way we grow fresh, nutritious and tasty food. The investment, part of a consortium including Suffolk County Council (in partnership with the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership), will finance the construction of a leading-edge vertical farm in Suffolk and will provide a range of fresh green produce for local supermarkets, catering and ingredients firms.
OneFarm aims to raise £6.7m from individual investors offering the chance to earn a return of 9% a year for 7 years, eligible for inclusion tax-free in an Innovative Finance ISA.
OneFarm’s indoor vertical farm in Suffolk will produce crops using modular growth towers, which will grow healthier, tastier greens using a fraction of the land needed for conventional farming.
This modular approach to growing will use precise climate control and LED lighting technology, which allows a single site to grow a highly reliable and flexible supply of produce, whatever the weather. The site uses technology developed by Intelligent Growth Solutions which has been proven to produce tastier, more nutritious and more reliable crops of leafy greens, herbs and microgreens in pilot projects.
Food production is one of the biggest and most difficult challenges for decarbonising the UK economy. The food market is driven by changing consumer tastes and demands; indoor vertical farming is well placed to satisfy this need for flexibility whilst reducing the UK’s reliance on imports and freeing up valuable land and resources in the process.
Mira Merne, Chief Executive, OneFarm, said: “OneFarm is at the forefront of a fast emerging sector which has an important part to play in a resilient food network set out in the Government’s National Food Strategy plan. We are partnering with a UK technology supplier to deliver a ‘made in the UK’ proposition that can provide tasty, locally grown green produce for UK consumers that is more sustainable.”
Compared with conventional farming, over the whole system One Farm will save energy and reduce wastage due to reduced transport, reduced crop losses from weather and disease, more efficient use of water and extended shelf life of produce.
Bruce Davis, co-founder and Managing Director, Abundance Investment, said: “Food presents a unique challenge for the transition to Net Zero. It is one of the big spenders in the UK’s carbon budget, but it is also a market driven by rapidly changing tastes and demands from consumers. OneFarm’s approach to vertical farming gives our investors the chance to invest in a project which aims not only to improve the sustainability of food production, but also to grow best in class produce in terms of taste and nutrition all year round.”