Pioneering UK vertical farm becomes first partner of innovative nature-based carbon-removal project

15 June, 23
A vertical farm that has launched the UK's first branded salad into a supermarket chain has just become the first Approved Partner of a pioneering conservation project in Kent.

A vertical farm that has launched the UK’s first branded salad into a supermarket chain has just become the first Approved Partner of a pioneering conservation project in Kent.

GrowUp Farms, which is a registered B Corp, is a pioneer in vertical farming with a farm in Kent, has recently launched Fresh Leaf Co.® into Iceland stores across the UK. Fresh Leaf Co. is the first-ever branded salad available to buy in a major supermarket group and is being described as an “industry first” with the launch of a salad brand grown by a vertical farm commercially in the UK all year.

In its drive to be an industry leading sustainable food business, GrowUp Farms has become the first Approved Buyer of carbon units generated by the Heather Corrie Vale wilding project, which is located on a former abandoned golf course in the Darenth Valley in Kent.

The wilding project is certified under the Wilder Carbon Standard for Nature and Climate, a not-for-profit natural climate solution, for which Kent Wildlife Trust is a Trusted Deliverer.

Heather Corrie Vale is one of the first live Wilder Carbon projects and GrowUp Farms will now be directly contributing towards the transformation of the site. As an Approved Buyer, GrowUp Farms has shown that it meets the Wilder Carbon Standard, which ensures that only those businesses that are taking steps to demonstrably reduce carbon emissions and fight climate change can be involved.

Kate Hofman, founder and Chief Brand Officer of GrowUp Farms, said: “We are thrilled to be the first Approved Buyer of Wilder Carbon credits from Heather Corrie Vale and to meet Wilder Carbon’s high standards when it comes to being an Approved Buyer.

“We are a low-carbon salad producer that has recently launched the first branded salad from a vertical farm into a major supermarket chain. Our crops are grown using renewable energy, and as a registered B Corp, combating climate change and having a positive impact on the planet, is at the heart of everything we do. We are also keen to be part of the long-term solution to ending the UK’s over-reliance on fruit and vegetable imports.

“However, there’s always more we can do to fight climate change. Investing in the right kind of high-quality projects such as Heather Corrie Vale that remove carbon and boost biodiversity is one of the best ways we can do this.

“We are really impressed with all the hard work that Wilder Carbon and Kent Wildlife Trust have put in to make pioneering projects like this possible. We’re absolutely delighted to be working with them and are looking forward to supporting more nature-based carbon removal in the future.”

Sarah Brownlie, Wilder Carbon, said: “We are delighted to see Grow-Up Farms partnering with Kent Wildlife Trust to directly contribute towards a certified Wilder Carbon project that will lock up-carbon whilst also improving biodiversity abundance.

“The climate and nature crises are intertwined, and Wilder Carbon projects deliver solutions to both by restoring nature and its natural processes.

“By working with businesses like Grow-Up Farms, who have shown a real commitment to reducing their own emissions we can offer long-term carbon lock-up by restoring our valuable native habits here in the UK.”

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