Ocado-backed vertical farm ‘revolutionising food production’ unveils second UK site

An Ocado-invested vertical farming business dubbed the ‘world’s most advanced vertical farm’ has opened a second location.

Located in Gloucestershire, the new Jones Food Company (JFC) site – known as JFC2, will use 100% renewably sourced energy to grow crops vertically, including plants such as basil, red lettuce and baby leaf pak choi.

The launch of the new site follows the opening of JFC1 in Lincolnshire in 2018 and another dedicated Innovation Centre in Bristol in 2022.

It comes as online grocer Ocado supported the high-tech farming business with a 58% stake and a £17m investment in 2019.

CFO Stephen Daintith said: “At Ocado Group, we are passionate about the long-term potential of vertical farming for both the food industry and for the environment.

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“JFC’s second vertical farm, JFC2, is an important strategic investment for Ocado and represents a significant step forward in this exciting and transformational space. We are confident in JFC’s leadership and their ability to execute on their vision – we look forward to supporting them on the way ahead.”

Jones Food Company founder and chief executive officer James Lloyd-Jones said: “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, at a super-competitive price. Commercial success in this sector has always been the challenge, but this farm smashes it.”

“There is a place for small urban vertical farms, but size, scale and affordability are how the VF revolution really delivers. Technology and sustainability, when married at this kind of scale, revolutionise food production, combat climate change, ensure food security, address labour issues and maximise efficiency.

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