Vertical Harvest grows up in Jackson

JACKSON, Wyo. — The Wyoming soil, iced over for eight months of the year, is not particularly hospitable to heirloom tomatoes, baby basil or lettuce plants. Instead, vegetables are trucked in from California, Mexico and other more fecund parts of the world. Yet starting this spring, Vertical Harvest, a farm in the resort town of Jackson, will begin churning out a projected 100,000 pounds of fresh produce a year, the New York Times reported.

Vertical Harvest uses hydroponic farming methods inside a three-story greenhouse on a 4,500-square-foot downtown lot. It is engaging in a relatively new practice called vertical farming.

The company employs 15 people who have conditions such as Down syndrome, autism, seizure disorders and spina bifida; they share 140 hours of work a week under a customized employment model. Vertical Harvest is a public-private partnership with the town of Jackson and it uses a low-profit business model, which means its investors will see a modest profit and it won’t come quickly.

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Photo courtesy of Vertical Harvest

Source: The New York Times

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