Lufa Farms announced the launch of their fourth commercial rooftop greenhouse in the borough of Saint-Laurent and the world’s largest rooftop greenhouse. This latest rooftop greenhouse doubles its fresh vegetable production capacity, adding 163 800 sqft for a total 300 000 sqft. Harvest of 10 varieties of tomatoes and 3 varieties of eggplants began on June 26 and reached full production on August 11th and now yields 25,000 lb of produce each week, allowing Lufa Farms to serve more and more Quebec families year-round.
This greenhouse follows Lufa Farms’ responsible agriculture practices; growing polyculture with no synthetic pesticides, capturing rainwater, recirculating irrigation water and peaking in energy efficiency thanks to its energy curtain, anti-light pollution blackout curtain, double glass on the perimeter and the passive energy savings of simply being on an urban rooftop. “Growing food where people live is our mission and this greenhouse is an acceleration of that mission, the timing of which couldn’t be any better as we respond to an ever-growing demand for fresh, local, and responsible foods,” says Lauren Rathmell, Co-Founder and Greenhouse Director.
Fresh, local, responsible food systems in times of disruption
As the world responds to COVID-19, local food systems are proving as resilient and as essential as can be. “In March 2020, we saw a doubling of demand from existing and new Lufavores who couldn’t have been more supportive and understanding. It wasn’t easy, but our team worked incredibly hard and rose up to this challenge. Growing food locally on rooftops and sourcing from local farming families allowed us to to swiftly adjust and respond to this demand. We saw what the future looks like and it’s all about local and sustainable,” says Mohamed Hage, Co-Founder and CEO. In response to COVID-19, along with enacting stringent safety protocols early on, Lufa Farms launched 7-day service, tripled its home delivery capacity, launched a number of new software tools, and welcomed over 200 new team members, 35 new local farmers and food makers, and 30 000 new Lufavores. “In a span of 3 months we built and grew what would have normally taken us years. We were experimenting and learning so much and so fast. We started out naive and young but our culture and mission have been our north star. The Lufa team today is a hardened one, more ready and committed to our mission than ever.” says Lauren.