Erik Groszyk is a 30-year-old Harvard graduate and is harvesting crops from his own urban farm out of a shipping container. Groszyk is already one of the 10 entrepreneurial farmers selected by Square Roots. Square Roots is an indoor urban farming firm, which was launched by Tobias Peggs along with Kimbal Musk, the brother of Tesla CEO Elon Musk. Groszyk works as an investment banker, but also grows crops from the shipping container which is placed in a parking lot in Brooklyn. He grows kale, mini-head lettuce and other crops locally in Bedford-Stuyvesant, near Brooklyn. Groszyk harvests 15 to 20 pounds of crops weekly, according to a Reuters report. He has been trained in artificial lighting, water chemistry, nutrient balance, business development and sales.
In the innovative venture, every farmer each get a 320-square-foot steel shipping container for a year, and they can even control the climate of their own farm. The container consists of pink LED lights where the farmers can harvest GMO-free crops throughout the year. Groszyk makes personal deliveries to his 45 customers. He says that he selects particular crops based on the feedback from users as well as experiments with new crops if there are special requests.
Groszuk told Reuters, “Literally the first day we were here, they were lowering these shipping containers with a crane off the back of a truck. By the next week, we were already planting seeds.” Meanwhile, Square Roots produces around 500 pounds of crops each week for hundreds of its customers. Peggs told Reuters, “If we can come up with a solution that works for New York, then as the rest of the world increasingly looks like New York, we’ll be ready to scale everywhere.”
Square Root is an innovative company which provides farms as well as educates the farmers on sales, branding, business development. Interestingly, these farmers can take home 30 percent of the revenue with them. According to the company, farmers can take home an amount between $30,000 and $40,000 in a year.