How Greenhouse Farms Are Redefining “Local” Produce

“These are spoiled plants,” says Gotham Greens co-founder and CEO Viraj Puri, gesturing toward seemingly endless rows of perfectly symmetrical leaves —€” butter lettuce, arugula, basil —€” in vibrant, uniform shades of green.

His point is obvious inside Gotham Greens’ 20,000-square-foot rooftop greenhouse facility in Gowanus, Brooklyn, where red leaf goes from seed to sprout to harvest in tech-savvy, climate-controlled conditions —€” no wind, rain, or temperature fluctuations to be dealt with —€” and is then sold just steps below, on shelves at Whole Foods, and nearby to diners at restaurants like Franny’s and Gramercy Tavern. It’s just a small peek at a new approach to supplying supermarkets, restaurants, and chefs with the locally-grown produce consumers are increasingly demanding.

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