Target: Jolanta Hardej, CEO of FarmedHere
Goal: Congratulate FarmedHere on their record-breaking facility and Chicago for accommodating the farming needs of its urban community.
A new 90,000-square foot indoor farm – the largest indoor farm in the world – recently opened in the suburbs of Chicago. Sustainable indoor farming company FarmedHere aims to bring fresh produce to the Chicago area and offset the pollution caused in neighboring high-rises. We should congratulate FarmedHere for its recent expansion, and the Chicago area for its new sustainable addition.
The produce at FarmedHere’s new facility is grown entirely indoors – away from bugs, pesticides, and inclement weather. Since indoor farms are built vertically and produce is distributed locally, energy costs and travel pollution waste are reduced. FarmedHere uses advanced lighting and farming technology to allow their plants to grow more efficiently than on traditional farms. The vertical farm expansion also creates local city jobs and makes good use of dilapidated, abandoned buildings.
FarmedHere CEO Jolanta Hardej used to be a mortgage broker and interior designer. She first opened a 4,000-square foot indoor farm and then a 10,000-square foot one. “We hire local, we grow local, and we sell local,” Hardej explained in a recent interview with WGN News.
The newest and largest indoor farm in suburban Bedford Park features a soil-free aquaponic process that grows organic vegetables more sustainably produced than those from traditional farming. Spinach, lettuce, mint, and basil are grown in stacked beds and fed a mineral-rich water solution derived from the tanks of hormone-free tilapia fish.
Thanks to a $100,000 loan from Whole Foods, FarmedHere plans to produce over 1 million pounds of organic greens per year. Sign the below petition to congratulate FarmedHere on their record-breaking facility, and Chicago for accommodating the farming needs of its urban community.
Dear Ms. Hardej,
Thank you for your continued work with FarmedHere to bring fresh produce to the Chicagoland area in an environmentally sustainable way. Not only are you helping the community have better access to healthy foods, you are also helping to create jobs in Chicago and the neighboring suburbs.
I am urging you to work with environmental professionals to make the lighting and watering process as efficient as possible. If your indoor farms prove to be more effective than traditional farms over time, we can build more vertical farms in cities around the world.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: International Institute for Environment and Development via Flickr