UK – British-based Jones Food Company (JFC) has broadened its portfolio in the realm of agricultural technology with the opening of its second vertical farm, JFC2, situated in Gloucestershire.

Following the successful launch of JFC1 in Lincolnshire in 2018 and a cutting-edge vertical farming innovation center in Bristol in 2022, the company continues to redefine sustainable food production.

JFC2 is powered by renewably sourced energy, cultivating an array of crops, including basil, coriander, flat-leaf parsley, dill, green lettuce, red lettuce, baby leaf pak choi, beetroot leaves, Japanese spinach, and baby leaf cress.

James Lloyd-Jones, the founder, and CEO of JFC, emphasizes the breakthrough achieved: “This farm represents a coming-of-age for agricultural technology in the UK; we have now cracked the code for accessible, sustainable, premium food being grown all-year-round.”

He underscores the pivotal role of technology and sustainability on a large scale, stating, “Technology and sustainability, when married at this kind of scale, revolutionize food production, combat climate change, ensure food security, address labor issues and maximize efficiency.”

Glyn Stephens, Head of Growing for JFC, sheds light on the farm’s energy efficiency improvements, saying, “A lot of vertical farmers have focused on lights, but temperature and humidity control are where the real energy guzzle has traditionally been.”

JFC2 addresses this concern, incorporating lessons learned from JFC1 to significantly reduce energy usage.

The output from JFC2 extends to supplying own-label herbs, the company’s ‘Homegrown’ range of mixed salad bags, and its assortment of sauces and salad bags, showcasing the versatility of vertical farming in meeting diverse market demands.

Vertical farming has witnessed a surge in popularity in the UK, with urban centers becoming home to various vertical farms, supported by private and government funds.

The global vertical farming market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 5.4% from 2021 to 2026, with Europe accounting for 21% of the total market.

However, a Market Data Forecast report predicts a substantial growth of 22% annually in the vertical farming market in Europe, reaching a value of USD 2.31 billion by 2026, up from USD 0.85 billion in 2021.

The UK, alongside France, Germany, Spain, and Italy, stands as a prominent player in the European vertical farming market.

Rising consumer demand and technological advancements continue to fuel the popularity of vertical farming in these countries and across the continent, marking a significant shift in sustainable and efficient food production practices.

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