US indoor farming start-up Plenty has obtained $200 million in funding led by the SoftBank Vision Fund as it expands its agriculture model.
Plenty claims to be developing patented technologies to build a ‘new kind of indoor farm’ that uses LED lighting and micro sensor technology to deliver higher quality produce.
The company said the investment will boost its global farm network and support its mission of ‘making fresh produce available and affordable for people everywhere’.
As part of the deal, SoftBank Vision Fund’s managing director Jeffrey Housenbold will join the Plenty board of directors.
SoftBank Group Corp chairman Masayoshi Son said: “By combining technology with optimal agriculture methods, Plenty is working to make ultra-fresh, nutrient-rich food accessible to everyone in an always-local way that minimises wastage from transport.
“We believe that Plenty’s team will remake the current food system to improve people’s quality of life.”
Based in San Francisco, Plenty plans to build its farms near the world’s major population centres to produce GMO and pesticide-free produce while minimising water use.
Plenty CEO and founder Matt Barnard said: “Fruits and vegetables grown conventionally spend days, weeks, and thousands of miles on freeways and in storage, keeping us all from what we crave and deserve — food as irresistible and nutritious as what we used to eat out of our grandparents’ gardens.
“The world is out of land in the places it’s most economical to grow these crops.”
He concluded: “We’re now ready to build out our farm network and serve communities around the globe.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2018