Small logo Subscribe to leading news on impact investing. Learn More
The Brief Originals Dealflow Signals The Impact Alpha Impact Voices Podcasts Agents of Impact Open
What's Next Measure Better Investing in Racial Equity Beyond Trade-offs Impact en las Americas New Revivalists
Local and Inclusive Climate Finance Catalytic Capital Capital on the Frontier Best Practices Geographies
Slack Conference Calls Events Contribute
The Archive ImpactSpace The Accelerator Selection Tool Network Map
About Us FAQ Calendar Pricing and Payment Policy Privacy Policy Terms of Service Agreement Contact Us
Locavesting Entrepreneurship Gender Smart Return on Inclusion Good Jobs Creative economy Opportunity Zones Investing in place Housing New Schooled Well Being People on the Move Faith and investing Inclusive Fintech
Clean Energy Farmer Finance Soil Wealth Conservation Finance Financing Fish
Innovative Finance
Personal Finance Impact Management
Africa Asia Europe Latin America Middle East Oceania/Australia China Canada India United Kingdom United States
Subscribe
Features
Series
Themes
Community
Data
Subscribe Log In
More

Equilibrium invests more than $100 million to grow greenhouse food production



ImpactAlpha, February 4 – The future of food is… indoors. Cost-reduction, year-round availability and food-system resilience are driving demand for food produced in ‘controlled environments,’ aka greenhouses with high-tech features. “Every time a hurricane sweeps through Florida, you wipe out crops,” Equilibrium Capital’s Dave Chen told ImpactAlpha.

Portland, Ore.-based Equilibrium has invested more than $100 million in three large-scale greenhouse operations in California, Utah, and Minnesota and plans to commit $2 billion to indoor food production over the next five years  The three facilities together cover about 200 acres (an American football field is roughly one acre). “This is economically driven sustainability,” Chen says. “It is a practical, at-scale, and closed-loop use of our natural resources.”

  • Large-scale, high-tech. The firm has taken equity stakes in California-based Houweling Group’s greenhouse facilities in California and Utah (tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers) and Minnesota-based Revol Greens (lettuce and greens). It has also invested in a large hydroponic berry producer that Chen decline to name. Equilibrium’s investments will help Houweling and Revol double the size of their facilities over the next 12 to 24 months, and will support the berry producer’s expansion by more than 350 acres.
  • Sunlight. One advantage over “vertical” farming: natural sunlight that reduces energy costs. Houweling’s Utah greenhouse uses waste heat and carbon dioxide from a nearby natural-gas power plant. Improved working conditions can attract workers in a tight labor market, Chen says. “Those are now permanent, year-round jobs.”
  • Institutional shift. Equilibrium filed with the SEC last March to raise $250 million for its Controlled Environment Foods Fund; one institutional investor already onboard is LGIASuper, the Australian retirement fund manager.

You might also like...