SAN JOSE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Willo, a state-of-the-art indoor vertical farming startup, debuted a brand new direct-to-consumer delivery program in San Jose to provide the highest quality custom produce experience in the Bay Area. Founded by brothers Samuel and John Bertram, Willo’s personalized cultivation and delivery service connects consumers directly to their own plot in Willo’s local vertical farm. Willo’s substantially automated farm grows the highest quality plant produce that is uniquely safe, delicious and nutritious year-round without pesticides, herbicides or GMOs.
South Bay Area residents will be the first to experience Farming as a Service through Willo’s innovative cultivation technology. Residents within 20 miles of Santa Clara, Calif. can subscribe to an exclusive plot in Willo’s farm starting at $99 a month at willo.farm. The membership grants access to regular deliveries of customizable packaged salads starting in August. A single purchase option is also available for $49. The rapidly growing list of available crops currently includes Toscano Kale, Red Mizuna, Pea Shoots, Protein Crunch and Genovese Basil. Willo will add additional fruits and vegetables to its farming capabilities as it scales.
“Willo is unleashing the power of plants on human health,” said Samuel Bertram, co-founder and CEO of Willo. “For the first time, fresh food will be grown specifically for the person consuming it. Personalization exists everywhere except for the food industry; and we’re here to give the market what they are asking for. By letting people configure their own plot in Willo’s farm, we can grow the specific fruits and vegetables they desire, while making recommendations tailored to their health needs. Willo plans to build farms in every major city on Earth with the mission to eliminate diet-related disease through personalized plant-based nutrition.”
A strong proponent of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), Willo also announced today a partnership with HomeFirst Services of Santa Clara County to further extend the positive impacts of sustainable local indoor farming practices. Willo will deliver fresh produce from its farm to assemble 40 ready-made plant-based meals each month for homeless individuals and families in the San Jose area.
“This is a really important part of a well-balanced diet that is difficult to procure on a large scale for homeless shelters,” said Lori Smith, director of development and communications at HomeFirst. “Together with HomeFirst, Willo will bring tasty, nutrient-dense produce to shelter guests and the at-risk community served in Santa Clara County.”
Scalable and Sustainable Farming in Cities
Willo’s technology is optimized for scaling into urban settings with the intent of making local farming a global reality. Traditional produce travels on average 2,000 miles from farm to fork and changes hands over five times. Willo currently delivers within 20 miles of its farm, and the consumer’s hands are the first to touch it. Willo’s highly automated farming techniques remove pesticides and contamination, and produce essentially zero water consumption by recycling the water supply. The technology is designed to yield the most nutritious and delicious plant produce imaginable.
Compared to traditional agriculture, Willo uses significantly less land, water and labor. The technology was designed to reduce the tremendous load agriculture places on the environment and ecosystems. Willo has developed a new paradigm for fresh food production, distribution and consumption.
Following the success of the Bay Area launch, Willo will continue expanding the Farming as a Service model to urban communities across the country with planned expansions to cities like Los Angeles, San Diego, New York and Washington D.C. in the next 24 months. Willo aims to scale its technology to every major city globally to make local and sustainable farming accessible to everyone.
AI-Optimized Cultivation for Perfect Crops
Willo’s indoor farming technology utilizes purpose-built automation and AI technology to glean unique cultivation insights from every plant. Willo’s farm gathers not only fundamental data like CO2 levels, temperature and humidity, but also captures critical imagery data on the whole plant in a variety of spectra at high frequency. This data makes it possible to leverage computer-based learning and remote operation unlike other indoor farming systems.
Willo utilizes state-of-the-art indoor vertical farming technology to bring agriculture into the 21st century — and directly to consumers’ front doors. Subscribers have year-round access to the highest quality produce on the market, with zero pesticides, heavy metals and contaminants. Willo’s mission is to prevent and eliminate diet-related disease by revitalizing the ancient relationship between human health and plant-based food. Willo is located in San Jose, Calif. and has raised over $12 million from investors. Join our community on Instagram, or visit willo.farm to sign up for your first plot.