In the Press.

HortiDaily

17/07/17

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UK: Deptford just got its own vertical farm

A new vertical farm has opened its doors in Deptford housed within a previously disused warehouse.

Tech startup Vertical Future has launched the new farm, which is both the company and Deptford’s first vertical farm, just months after the company was established and sealed a six-figure funding package from HSBC.

In what is the first of a number of planned farms operating under the MiniCrops brand, the farm has been developed as part of The Artworks’ new Creekside development and will provide the local community and businesses with sustainably grown fresh produce.

Founders of Vertical Future, Jamie and Marie-Alexandrine Burrows said in a statement that their planned network of London sites will do more than just provide crops and produce, but also provide community outreach and engagement projects to help tackle some of our most pressing urban problems.

They said: “We want to make cities a better place for our children, and our urban initiatives are long-term responses to the ongoing issues of urbanisation.”

“All signs following our launch have been positive and launching MiniCrops is our first real milestone as a new business.”

“We want to promote fast but sustainable growth that will make a real impact on our local communities around each site.”


 

The Independent

01/03/17

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Vertical future: London based start-up to launch device to tackle air pollution in major cities.
The World Health Organisation estimates air pollution annually costs the UK £62bn.

A London-based tech start-up is developing a secretive tool designed to limit the impact of air pollution in major cities.

Husband-and-wife team Jamie and Marie-Alexandrine Burrows this week launched Vertical Future, a company backed by HSBC, which aims to tackle the negative effects of urbanisation and make our cities a “healthier place to live.

The company’s digital product to monitor and reduce air pollution is currently in development with a prototype expected by August 2017.

“We want to make cities better for our children,” Mr Burrows said.

“Our various urban initiatives are long-term responses to tackle the negative effects of urbanisation. To promote fast and sustainable growth, we are looking to work with research organisations, investors, government, and third sector organisations that share similar views on health and urbanisation” he added.

Vertical Future’s overall mission focuses on three themes: food, digital and living.

The company’s first step will be to launch a network of so-called vertical farms across London in disused buildings and recycled shipping containers. 

Vertical farming refers to a method of growing crops, usually without soil or natural light, in beds stacked vertically inside a controlled-environment building.Each farm promises to provide year-round produce for school and local communities, create jobs and improve awareness of food sustainability as well as reducing the distance that food travels from crop to plate.

The first site in South East London will be operational from April 2017 and plans are being drawn up for a second site.

This year London reached its annual limit for pollution in just five days, according to data from the capital’s main monitoring system.

The World Health Organisation estimates air pollution annually costs the UK £62bn, and London Mayor Sadiq Khan has made tackling the problem a priority of his administration.


 

Tech London 

28/02/17

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London, February 27th 2017 Vertical Future, a London-based technology start-up leveraging smart technologies to make cities healthier, has launched today. Founded by Jamie and Marie-Alexandrine Burrows, Vertical Future undertakes different technology initiatives using three urban themes: Food, Digital and Living.

Food – Controlling Agriculture to Offer Truly Local Food with Fewer Food Miles

Vertical Future’s agricultural initiative is a network of vertical farms across London using Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) technology – making use of disused buildings and recycled shipping containers. Each farm will provide high quality year-round produce for schools and local communities, create jobs, and improve awareness of food sustainability and healthy eating. The initiative addresses population growth in cities (United Nations, 2016) and the effect that this could have on urban food supply and demand. The first site in South East London will be operational from April 2017 and plans are being drawn up for a second site in North London.

Digital - Leveraging Digital Health Technologies to Help People Stay Healthy and Reduce Pressure on Health Services

The company is using digital health to target two key health service issues: prevention, which is an increasing priority in the NHS (King’s Fund, 2017), and patient follow-up, considering the increasing costs of an ageing population (Institute for Fiscal Studies, 2017). Vertical Future’s first digital initiative supports people to be healthier through gamification and incentives. The second digital initiative uses smart data from real-world sources to provide people with additional support after leaving hospital. The Vertical Future team plan to launch the two initiatives this summer.

Living – Using Smart Technologies to Tackle Air Pollution

More than 3 million people globally die every year from air pollution (The Economist, 2017) and in most major cities (including London) air quality exceeds safe levels (World Health Organisation, 2016). Vertical Future’s environmental initiative is a product to limit the impact of urban air pollution and improve public understanding of environmental risk factors. The product is currently in the development phase with a prototype expected by August 2017.

"We want to make cities better for our children" explains Jamie Burrows. "Our various urban initiatives are long-term responses to tackle the negative effects of urbanisation. To promote fast and sustainable growth, we are looking to work with research organisations, investors, government, and third sector organisations that share similar views on health and urbanisation" he added.


 

London Evening Standard

27/02/17

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Couple launch HSBC-backed venture Vertical Future to battle air pollution

A health-conscious husband and wife are developing a device they claim will limit air pollution in cities.

Jamie and Marie-Alexandrine Burrows have launched their company Vertical Future, which is backed by HSBC.

It will target a number of urban issues such as air pollution, concerns about which have grown in recent weeks.

Burrows said they are developing a “top secret” smart device to curb air pollution. A prototype is expected by August.

The father of two said: “Our various urban initiatives are long-term responses to tackle the negative effects of urbanisation.”

Burrows is a former health economist and his wife worked for the NHS in research.

Vertical Future will start by launching a network of so-called vertical farms in disused buildings and shipping containers, producing food for schools and local communities.

The first, in Deptford, will be operational in April and plans are already being drawn up for a second site in north London.

The business will also have a digital health division, using technology to alleviate pressure on the NHS.

“We want to make cities better for our children,” added Burrows.


 

Growth Business

27/02/17

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Green start-up Vertical Future brings sectors together to tackle urbanisation
Vertical Future may be the answer to the main problems of urbanisation: sustainable food production, access to healthcare, and air pollution.
London-based tech start-up, Vertical Future, ties smart technologies together to make cities healthier, focusing on three urban themes: food, digital and living, as a launchpad for its ambitious plans. Founded by Jamie and Marie-Alexandrine Burrows, Vertical Future’s core mission is to boost efficient and sustainable food production to keep pace with population growth in cities, alleviate the pressure on health services by making the most of digital health technologies, and mitigating air pollution.

Urban farms and local food

Vertical Future’s agricultural initiative is a network of vertical farms across London using controlled environment agriculture (CEA) technology – making use of disused buildings and recycled shipping containers. Each farm will provide high quality year-round produce for schools and local communities, create jobs, and improve awareness of food sustainability and healthy eating. The initiative addresses population growth in cities and the effect that this could have on urban food supply and demand. The first site in south east London will be operational from April 2017 and plans are being drawn up for a second site in north London.

Leveraging digital health technologies

The company is using digital health to target two key health service issues: prevention, which is an increasing priority in the NHS, and patient follow-up, considering the increasing costs of an ageing population. Vertical Future’s first digital initiative supports people to be healthier through gamifying healthy activity and providing incentives. The second digital initiative uses smart data from real-world sources to provide people with additional support after leaving hospital. The Vertical Future team plans to launch the two initiatives this summer.

Tackling air pollution

More than 3 million people globally die every year from air pollution and in most major cities (including London) air quality exceeds safe levels. Vertical Future is working on a product to limit the impact of urban air pollution and improve public understanding of environmental risk factors. The product is currently in the development phase with a prototype expected by August 2017.

“We want to make cities better for our children” explained co-founder Jamie Burrows. “Our various urban initiatives are long-term responses to tackle the negative effects of urbanisation. To promote fast and sustainable growth, we are looking to work with research organisations, investors, government, and third sector organisations that share similar views on health and urbanisation” he added.