Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Grocery stores begin growing their own produce in store


Anna N
 Share

Recommended Posts

Here

 

C12B03A8-8806-4453-B28A-59AA7CB0DB25.thumb.jpeg.60b35bd8f1f5880d90b46bb27765f789.jpeg

 

14B20E61-539B-4F29-92FC-9AFA9000AA9E.thumb.jpeg.4b2dd912bda2d6fb0076da08003ec285.jpeg

 

Photos are from one of our local Sobeys.  
 

 

  • Like 11
  • Thanks 2

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The pandemic has taught me this: Every home should be growing something, even without an outdoor garden.

 

So nice I don't have to sanitize my salad greens. So nice I don't have to go to stores for many vegetables.

 

dcarch

 

 

 

Edited by dcarch (log)
  • Like 4
  • Delicious 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, KennethT said:

@Anna NI was just reading about a Whole Foods in Manhattan that was partnerning with a small hydroponic herb producer who sells (sold, prepandemic) mostly to restaurants.

Well I do hope this catches on and it’s not just a fad. Even fresh herbs would be nice rather than those little clam shells. (It’s no good telling me to grow my own. Been down that road and found it dusty and inhospitable.)

  • Like 2

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, dcarch said:

The pandemic has taught me this: Every home should be growing something, even without an outdoor garden.

 

So nice I don't have to sanitize my salad greens. So nice I don't have to go to stores for many vegetables.

 

dcarch

 

 

 

 

Yup.  I'm more afraid of other infections than covid from my salad, though.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Warm moist conditions favor the growth of more than greens.

I wonder how rigorous the supermarket procedures have to be to keep this set-up from growing nasty things.

 

Having said that, I do think its safer this way than the traditional distribution method and has the added benefit of longer shelf-life, since the greens don't spend a week or two between picking and the eventual sale.

 

ETA...Looking at their website, they grow mostly herbs as opposed to what would make up the body of a salad. There are a couple salad greens for sure, but I infer that they can't grow bulk greens on a practical scale yet.

Edited by gfweb (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Scale seems limited. Cost? Cute but financially viable? We buy the potted herbs in major chains like Kroger in the produce aisle and at TJ. Maybe sprouting our own greens at home makes more ecological and financial sense.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Also when I was at ICE in NYC a couple of years back visiting Michael Laiskonis they had a huge version of this. It was kept scrupulously clean - and apparently they had to fertilize plants manually with a toothbrush because there were no insects to do so. 

 

Chocdoc and Patris Lunching with Laiskonis

  • Like 1
  • Delicious 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, Kerry Beal said:

Also when I was at ICE in NYC a couple of years back visiting Michael Laiskonis they had a huge version of this. It was kept scrupulously clean - and apparently they had to fertilize plants manually with a toothbrush because there were no insects to do so. 

 

Chocdoc and Patris Lunching with Laiskonis

Those plants look like they're hydroponically grown with no media - looks like an NFT (nutrient film technique) system where the plants sit in channels where a river of nutrient runs over the bare roots. It's a great technique for short lived plants - they grow really quickly due to the high oxygen concentration in the root zone. And it's easy to clean and keep clean.  It's not good for long term plants because as the plant grows, so does the root system, and an older plant will probably clog the channel causing at best what's known as ponding - stagnant anaerobic nutrient in the channel and at worst a flood all over the floor.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  15 hours ago, KennethT said:

@Anna NI was just reading about a Whole Foods in Manhattan that was partnerning with a small hydroponic herb producer who sells (sold, prepandemic) mostly to restaurants.

 

Doesn't the WF in Gowanus have a big greenhouse setup on their roof?

 

We (a friend and I) led a few tours for the IACP years ago (2012), when the conference was held here in NYC.  We got to tour the infant greenhouses of what I believe was Gotham Greens, when they were pretty much in their infancy.

 

IMG_3772.thumb.JPG.7b325d499dd6724976ed30bf497d042f.JPG

 

IMG_3773.thumb.JPG.2ec2ed28cbb08b19be536359f09734af.JPG

 

IMG_3774.thumb.JPG.e06025f94bdffc1ed5a5713526d9d0d4.JPG

 

As for me, my indoor gardening is limited to bean sprouts.

  • Like 2

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

27 minutes ago, weinoo said:
  15 hours ago, KennethT said:

@Anna NI was just reading about a Whole Foods in Manhattan that was partnerning with a small hydroponic herb producer who sells (sold, prepandemic) mostly to restaurants.

 

Doesn't the WF in Gowanus have a big greenhouse setup on their roof?

 

We (a friend and I) led a few tours for the IACP years ago (2012), when the conference was held here in NYC.  We got to tour the infant greenhouses of what I believe was Gotham Greens, when they were pretty much in their infancy.

 

IMG_3772.thumb.JPG.7b325d499dd6724976ed30bf497d042f.JPG

 

IMG_3773.thumb.JPG.2ec2ed28cbb08b19be536359f09734af.JPG

 

IMG_3774.thumb.JPG.e06025f94bdffc1ed5a5713526d9d0d4.JPG

 

As for me, my indoor gardening is limited to bean sprouts.

Yes, Gotham Greens partnered with Whole Foods and put a greenhouse on top of the store in Brooklyn.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I visited a good size rooftop greenhouse operation downtown west side NYC. They also grow mostly for restaurants.

 

Rooftop farming is very difficult:

1. Liability issue for building owners.

2. Roof structural load is not designed for heavy weight.

3. Air conditioning cooling tower vapor is not good for plants.

4. No bathrooms for workers.

5. Water proofing for roofs is always a problem.

6. Very very few buildings have elevators or freight elevators to the roof.

 

dcarch

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I like this idea, but I do not see it as a scalable business.  Unless you plan on training store employees to become hydro growers.  Yes IoT can help with sensor technology etc, but there is still a required human element.

 

17 hours ago, dcarch said:

The pandemic has taught me this: Every home should be growing something, even without an outdoor garden.

 

So nice I don't have to sanitize my salad greens. So nice I don't have to go to stores for many vegetables.

 

dcarch

 

 

 

 

Indeed @dcarch!

 

I have a great little 80watt LED strip bar light that not only sprouts seeds beautifully but also produces some great lettuce.  My outdoor Bay Leaf and Curry leaf plant are near a South facing window almost on a heat return - so far, they are content!  I run no-till organic living soil.

 

Curious as to what veggies you grow during the cold months and your setup?

 

 

Edited by TicTac (log)
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, TicTac said:

I have a great little 80watt LED strip bar light that not only sprouts seeds beautifully but also produces some great lettuce.  My outdoor Bay Leaf and Curry leaf plant are near a South facing window almost on a heat return - so far, they are content!  I run no-till organic living soil.

 

Curious as to what veggies you grow during the cold months and your setup?

 

I had posted in this Egullet sometime ago (not sure if I can find the post) my DIY LED lights, 300 watts each, 4 of them.

You ask, doesn't that use a lot of electricity?

Yes, 1,200 watts of electricity. But I power them with my 2,000 watt solar panels.

 

I grows all kind of greens and a couple of tomato plants. In my basement, year round.

 

dcarch

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

21 minutes ago, dcarch said:

I visited a good size rooftop greenhouse operation downtown west side NYC. They also grow mostly for restaurants.

 

Rooftop farming is very difficult:

1. Liability issue for building owners.

2. Roof structural load is not designed for heavy weight.

3. Air conditioning cooling tower vapor is not good for plants.

4. No bathrooms for workers.

5. Water proofing for roofs is always a problem.

6. Very very few buildings have elevators or freight elevators to the roof.

 

dcarch

In general this is true, but with media-less hydroponics (like NFT systems), the weight is considerably less than it is with traditional soil.  Yes, you still need to find a building that has a strong enough roof to withstand the weight, and the proper logistics but it's not impossible. Not all buildings use cooling towers -  many warehouse buildings either do not have cooling at all or use a standard refrigerant HVAC systems.  Also, with recirculating hydroponics, waterproofing the roof is not an issue since the nutrient is in a closed system. Gotham Greens has a lot of rooftop greenhouses - one of their founders is a botanist who developed recipes for different plants (lettuce, herbs, etc.) for hydroponics that match the specific plant's nutritional needs.  In hobby type recirculating hydroponics, it's common to dump the reservoir once in a while because when adding a general hydro fertiliser, over time you get imbalances as the plants use more of some nutrients than others.  These imbalances can cause lockout and deficiencies.  What Gotham Greens does is feed a specific nutrient mix that matches the requirements of each plant, so they never have to dump the reservoir - the nutrient mix always stays in balance.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

41 minutes ago, dcarch said:

I visited a good size rooftop greenhouse operation downtown west side NYC. They also grow mostly for restaurants.

 

Rooftop farming is very difficult:

1. Liability issue for building owners.

2. Roof structural load is not designed for heavy weight.

3. Air conditioning cooling tower vapor is not good for plants.

4. No bathrooms for workers.

5. Water proofing for roofs is always a problem.

6. Very very few buildings have elevators or freight elevators to the roof.

 

dcarch

 

I suspect that the more one knows about buildings, the less this looks like a good idea.

 

I recall a story about the Javits Center having a honeybee operation on the roof. Probably minimal stress to the roof, but I pictured all those honeybees feeding in dumpsters and dead rats....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm playing a bit with indoor gardening right now, more or less just to scratch the itch while I wait for spring to roll around again.

 

In my current rental solar is just not a possibility, and I also don't have a lot of natural light (our windows face N and NW). So this means artificial lighting, but with frugality top-of-mind. At present I have a mixture of broad-spectrum bulb-style grow lights from the building supplies store. They're okay for starting seeds and suchlike, but aren't really cutting it for full-sized plants. I'm looking at probably picking up a few Sun Blaster LEDs from my local garden-supplies store, the kind that are a drop-in replacement for their fluorescent tubes. I think those will do what we need.

 

I have at present one tomato plant that's just begun to blossom, plus some beans in a large-ish planter (they're only a couple of weeks old, but growing well) and a couple of windowsill planters with lettuces and lettuce-adjacent greenery (ie, a package of "mesclun mix" seeds). I also have a hanging planter with nasturtiums, to go into the window of my GF's office for aesthetic purposes and also because I like nasturtiums as a salad ingredient. Still early days for everything except the tomato, which I planted as the outdoor gardening season was coming to a close.

In the longer term I see indoor growing as something I'll do more of. My GF and I hope to build out a "forever home" in Nova Scotia's relatively mild Annapolis Valley a few years from now, and gardening is a big part of the picture for me. Unfortunately the reality is that I'll be in my 60s by the time it happens and will need to plan around declining mobility, potential illnesses and suchlike. So I intend to borrow the notion of purpose-built interior growing spaces from the "Earthship" builders, though I'll implement it in a way that makes sense in my own climate (which, of course, is the opposite of their hot and arid conditions).

That opens up the prospect not just of more reliable growing conditions, but potentially growing things that otherwise would be out of the question. I know of at least one farm family in that part of the province who grow enough indoor figs for their own use, for example, and also a limited quantity to sell at the farmer's market (and supposedly they're now playing with citrus as well).

Aside from the culinary value of the indoor growing, and the mental-health/physical fitness aspects of gardening as an activity, my cold-loathing GF is also looking forward to having a warm and sunny space where she can bask and be surrounded by green and growing things. Sounds to me like a sure-fire fix for SAD.

  • Like 2

“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, dcarch said:

I had posted in this Egullet sometime ago (not sure if I can find the post) my DIY LED lights, 300 watts each, 4 of them.

You ask, doesn't that use a lot of electricity?

Yes, 1,200 watts of electricity. But I power them with my 2,000 watt solar panels.

 

I grows all kind of greens and a couple of tomato plants. In my basement, year round.

 

dcarch

 

I'd love a photo of the set-up

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...