GrowUp Urban Farms is committed to feeding people in cities in a way that is positive for communities and the environment, today and in the future. Founded by Tom Webster and Kate Hofman in 2013, GrowUp Urban Farms has just completed the construction of the UK's first commercial scale aquaponic urban farm - "Unit 84” - in Beckton, East London. They produce sustainable fresh fish, salads and herbs in cities using a combination of aquaponic and vertical growing technologies. Aquaponics is a combination of hydroponics (growing plants in a nutrient solution rather than soil) and aquaculture (fish farming). They take the nutrient rich waste water from their fish farm and use it as the fertiliser for a hydroponic system. This way they reduce the impact of fish farming on the surrounding environment by removing effluent run off and in turn increase the sustainability of their hydroponic system by using the fish waste as fertiliser.
Their crops are grown under LED lights which allows them to grow consistent quantities of high quality leafy salads all year round. The light spectrum of the LEDs is tailored to the exact needs of the plants at different stages in their life ensuring that they get all the light they need without wasting any energy.
GrowUp Urban Farm is a business driven by social and environmental values - they have an Environmental Impact Policy that helps to analyse impact and understand how to reduce it. Their farm is completely powered by renewable energy, and produce is delivered to customers using electric vehicle. They have a Zero Waste to Landfill policy for all waste arising from our activities on the farm. All of their packaging is made from 100% recycled, 100% recyclable plastic and punnets have been specially selected to keep produce safe in transport and super fresh in your fridge.
‘We’re really excited to be working with Farmdrop as it allows us to connect directly with customers who share our passion for quality, local produce and ensures a fair price for everyone involved’ Tom Webster, Co-Founder
● Founded in 2013
● Winners of the Barclays Support and Mentoring for Social Enterprises competition (awarded in May 2013)
● Climate-KIC EIT C.H.A.N.G.E Award (awarded in 2013)
● UK Finalists in the Climate-KIC Venture Competition 2014
● London Leaders Programme by London Sustainable Development Commission (LSDC) (awarded in 2015)