Food distributor partners with ‘indoor farm’ company


The Boucherville Distribution Center in Quebec, near Montreal. Courtesy Gordon Food Service

A locally based food distributor and retailer is partnering with a company that builds modular “indoor farms” and offers a tech platform for training future growers.

Gordon Food Service in Wyoming has signed a strategic partnership with Brooklyn, New York-based Square Roots, according to Gordon Food Service yesterday.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Under the agreement, the companies will establish new campuses of Square Roots’ indoor farms at or near Gordon Food Service distribution centers and retail stores across North America to enable “year-round growing of premium quality herbs, greens and more” that GFS will then sell to customers.

Rich Wolowski, CEO of Gordon Food Service, said the exclusive partnership comes as customers are increasingly demanding fresh, high-quality, local food.

“Customers want an assortment of fresh, locally grown food all year round. We are on a path to do that at scale with Square Roots and are excited to be the first in the industry to offer this unique solution to our customers,” Wolowski said.

Tobias Peggs, co-founder and CEO of Square Roots, said the deal represents Square Root’s first “significant expansion” to new locations.

“This partnership means we will grow delicious, local, real food at huge scale,” he said. “We’re so happy to be working with a mission-aligned partner in Gordon Food Service — leveraging technology to bring real food to a huge number of people across the country, while delivering real social impact by empowering thousands of young people to become our country’s future farmers.”

In addition to Square Roots’ “high-tech farming platform” and Next-Gen Farmer Training Program, the company’s “transparency timeline” enables customers to trace how and where their food was grown and who grew it by scanning a QR code on its packaging.

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