"As of February 2024, I'm leaving a happy and growing Farm.One, and I'm looking back to say "Thank you!" to the huge team of folks who support us," says Rob Laing, Founder of Farm.One is a vertical farm based in New York, USA.
Rob started Farm.One was in early 2016 as an ambitious, weird idea to grow specialty crops year-round for local chefs in Manhattan's first vertical farm. And, they succeeded in numerous ways - attracting scores of Michelin-starred restaurant customers, pivoting through COVID into a widely-loved consumer offering, training dozens of folks on how to farm indoors, and introducing thousands of visitors to the technology of vertical farming and the diverse tastes of hundreds of edible plants.
Adding onto that, "We did all this with a commitment to the environment and people, eliminating huge amounts of plastic waste with our reusables program and creating new careers for folks in indoor ag. Most recently, we were lucky enough to be reborn with the help of Derek Pitt's new ownership, and we are soon to launch a brewery."
Rob dives into his most memorable moments with Farm.One here.
Rob Laing pictured in Farm. One's Brooklyn farm back in 2023
"I've been lucky enough to have founded Gengo.com and Farm.One, two startups on two continents, both acquired to write a book on hydroponics and to work as a technology and creative strategist and incubator for Google on fascinating global 'moonshot' sustainability projects. This mix of startup and corporate experience, of both soft tech vs 'hard tech' connected to food and agriculture, of success and failure, and my time in the UK, Australia, Belgium, Japan, and the US have given me a weird and unique mix of global perspectives for today's challenges," Rob continues.
"And boy, are there a few challenges in the world right now. But I believe our path through the climate emergency, the global mental health crisis, and our fractured political landscape will come via a reassessment of why and how we work, a real commitment to people's need to thrive, and a respect for our planet. So that's a big part of what I'm working on next."
Rob will start working as a consultant. He will coach startups and larger organizations to focus on brand and narrative, team and culture, and simple human technology.
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