The latest funding deals in the vertical farming industry continue to impress. AeroFarms, the New Jersey-based vertical farming company, has raised $100 million in late-stage funding, Germany’s Infarm also raised $100 million just last month, and Bowery raised a $90 million Series B last year. Currently, Plenty’s $200 million Series B from 2017 is still the largest in the space.
According to Urban Health Farms managing partner, Bernard Sleijster, this is good news for the industry on the whole, although CEO of AeroFarms hinted that the indoor vertical farming business needs time to adjust to new technology, as well as inputs of new capital. “This is an industry where the details matter and the pennies matter,” he said.
Henry Gordon-Smith, founder of Agritecture, the urban farming consultancy and a leading voice in the industry, says that in most cases large scale vertical farms will take at least six years to see a return on their investment. Only a few years ago, that timeline was at least eight years.
With rapid advances in automation technologies and advances in LED lighting, vertical farming is becoming more profitable each year. Costs are dropping and becoming more consistent and many large players are developing proprietary technology systems in-house.
This increasing development of accessible technology is opening the vertical farming industry to potentially accelerate the entire industry to develop at a fraction of the initial investment.
This includes Urban Health Farms’ technology partner, Urban Crop Solutions, labeled as a major global market player by Data Bridge.