by Tina Olivero

    Crop One Holdings & Emirates Flight Catering Celebrate Opening of ECO 1

    Crop One Holdings, an industry leader in technology-driven indoor vertical farming, and Emirates Flight Catering (EKFC), one of the world’s largest catering operations serving more than 100 airlines, announced the completion and official opening of Emirates Crop One (ECO 1), the world’s largest vertical farm. Located in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates near Al Maktoum International Airport at Dubai World Central, the more than 330,000-square-foot facility, which spans 175 yards in length, will produce over 2 million pounds of high-quality leafy greens annually.

    “We are proud to bring Crop One’s best-in-class technology to this innovative food production facility alongside our joint venture partner. ECO 1 will address growing supply chain challenges and food security issues while introducing millions of new consumers to the benefits of vertically farmed produce,” said Craig Ratajczyk, Chief Executive Officer at Crop One. “It’s our mission to cultivate a sustainable future to meet global demand for fresh, local food, and this new farm is the manifestation of that commitment. This new facility serves as a model for what’s possible around the globe.”

    The hydroponic facility is designed for continuous output of leafy green crops that are exceedingly clean and require no pre-washing, always grown without pesticides, herbicides, or chemicals. Powered by Crop One’s Plants-First™ technology and infrastructure, the farm utilizes machine learning, artificial intelligence, and data analytics, and is managed by a specialized in-house team of engineers, and computer and plant scientists. ECO 1 uses 95% less water than field-grown produce while guaranteeing an output of three tons per day.

    Passengers on Emirates and other airlines can enjoy the facility’s leafy greens, including lettuces, arugula, mixed salad greens, and spinach, onboard their flights starting this month. Local UAE consumers can look for the product on store shelves under the Bustanica brand.

    ECO 1 is Crop One’s second farm, following its Millis, Mass. headquarters, which has been in continuous operation since 2015. To learn more about Crop One, visit cropone.ag.

    About Crop One

    Headquartered outside of Boston, Mass., Crop One is a technology-driven indoor vertical farming company on a mission to cultivate a sustainable future to meet global demand for fresh, local, and safe food. Through its Plants-First™ approach and industry-leading technology platform, Crop One grows fresh, delicious leafy greens using 95% less water than field-grown produce. Because the growth of crops takes place in entirely sealed and controlled environments, growing and harvesting can happen 365 days a year, regardless of the season. Crop One sells its fresh, local produce under the FreshBox Farms label, available at a variety of retailers across southern New England.

    About Emirates Flight Catering

    Emirates Flight Catering is one of the world’s largest catering operations. Offering airline, events, and VIP catering as well as ancillary services including laundry, food production, and airport lounge food & beverage, Emirates Flight Catering is a trusted partner of over 100 airline customers, hospitality groups, and UAE government entities. Each day, the company’s 11,000 dedicated employees prepare an average of 200,000 meals and handle 210 tonnes of laundry.

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