In an exciting cooperation, long-term GLOBALG.A.P. member ALDI SÜD and GLOBALG.A.P. certified urban farming concept Infarm have joined forces. Infarm provides freshly harvested herbs to ALDI customers.

Mint, basil, cilantro, and other fresh herbs are now being grown inside select ALDI SÜD stores. Customers can buy the freshly harvested plants directly from indoor farms. This is possible thanks to an exclusive partnership with the world’s fastest-growing farming network, Infarm. The first herb gardens are available at five ALDI SÜD locations around Düsseldorf and Frankfurt starting in May. By the end of 2020, seven more stores will be equipped with the farms. In addition, Infarm growing centers will provide fresh locally grown herbs to more than 300 ALDI SÜD stores starting in fall.

ALDI SÜD is expanding its produce aisles by adding fresh herbs that are grown right on site in the store. The discounter is hopping on the indoor farming train and setting up transparent glass enclosures with small-scale herb farms in its stores to offer six different herbs. Each will be sold for €0.99. “Our customers can now watch their herbs grow. The plants are cultivated and harvested right here in the store – it doesn’t get any fresher,” David Labinsky, Group Buying Director at ALDI SÜD, explains. “With this partnership, we are not only helping ALDI SÜD shorten the supply chain. We are also building a farming network throughout Germany and around the world,” says Erez Galonska, co-founder and CEO of Infarm. “That way, we can make something a reality that more and more people not only expect from their grocery store experience, but also hope to see for our planet: sustainable, locally sourced, delicious premium quality food that is available and affordable for everyone.”

Smart Herb Gardens in ALDI SÜD Stores

The highly efficient vertical layout of the indoor herb farms makes it possible to plant and harvest herbs all year round in the produce sections of ALDI SÜD stores. Within the controlled farming environment, each plant receives exactly the right amount of light, water, and nutrients it needs in order to flourish. All Infarm farms are connected to a central cloud-based platform that is constantly learning and adapting to the plants’ requirements throughout the three-week growing phase. An Infarm gardener visits each herb farm on a regular basis to make sure the plants are thriving and to harvest the ones that are ready.

Growing Centers to Supply Local ALDI SÜD Stores

Inside the ALDI SÜD stores, herbs are grown on a few square meters – resulting in 90 percent shorter transport routes and 95 percent lower water usage compared to conventional herb farming. Best of all, Infarm uses no chemical pesticides. In addition to the small-scale herb farms in individual stores, the startup also operates larger growing centers nearby for ALDI SÜD, growing Italian and Greek basil, Delfino cilantro, chives, flat leaf parsley, and mint. More than 300 ALDI SÜD stores in the Mönchengladbach and Frankfurt regions will be receiving daily deliveries of fresh herbs from Infarm starting this fall.

ALDI SÜD Partnering with Startups

ALDI SÜD has formed partnerships with several new businesses to offer customers innovative solutions and added value. ALDI SÜD also contributes to various startup support programs. Together with ALDI Nord, the company entered a partnership with the startup accelerator program TechFounders in 2019. This program supports startups that are working on sustainable packaging solutions.

Read more about the partnership between ALDI SÜD and Infarm on the ALDI SÜD company blog and on Infarm’s blog.

Photo credit: Infarm

GGN 4056186901897 InFarm - Indoor Urban Farming GmbH, Colditzstr. 30, Berlin, Germany