Growing Up: farm-a-leaf

​​​​​​​A Company Making Local Food More Accessible

Ever wondered why most Americans shop at grocery stores? Many of us spend a considerable amount of time making grocery lists, driving across town, walking down aisles, and often buying much more than we anticipated.

We end up with foods that are overly processed, sprayed with chemical pesticides, driven hundreds of miles to reach the store, with a shelf life that’s shorter than your patience in the checkout line.

While we're accustomed to this routine, wouldn’t we all prefer a healthier, more convenient alternative? One that gives us peace of mind knowing where our food is grown and what kind of practices are used to grow it.

At farm-a-leaf, this is exactly what founders, Chris and Maria Rivera, have set out to do. They own and operate a small family farm in Bolton that specializes in growing leafy greens and herbs.

The state-of-the-art indoor vertical farm is 320 square feet and grows over two acres of produce using vertical channels and a climate-controlled environment. The technology built within the farm regulates the humidity, grow lights, and carbon dioxide levels – all important elements needed for indoor plant growth. All of the plants are grown using hydroponics, a technique of growing plants with water-based nutrients rather than soil.

“With hydroponics, you aren’t tied to land conditions like you would with traditional farming, and you use much less water and space,” Chris says. “We don’t have to worry about pests or the weather, and we can grow our plants 365 days a year.”

This means customers are receiving high quality produce all year round, with no use of pesticides or herbicides, he adds. 

“We want to provide a safe, trusted product to our customers so using clean ingredients to grow our plants is very important to us” Maria adds. The company’s commitment to sustainable practices extends to their use of 100% compostable packaging, with plans to incorporate reusable packaging that will be exchanged at the time of delivery.

At farm-a-leaf, greens are harvested every week and delivered next day to customers. This assures they receive super fresh, long-lasting produce, all reasons why customers are turning to farm-a-leaf for their weekly produce.

Along with peak season quality, the company prides itself on the service it provides to customers. They sell produce online, offering one-time purchases or subscriptions for weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly deliveries. The subscription service comes with exclusive offers, and customers can save more by buying larger quantities. For those who are new and interested in trying out the greens, farm-a-leaf offers a Sample Box with some of the farm’s best sellers including their Summer Crisp Lettuce, kale, arugula, basil, or parsley.

Less than a year in operation, farm-a-leaf is moving fast to expand its online presence and product offerings. The company is looking to serve more local customers in Bolton, Vernon, Glastonbury, West Hartford, and other nearby towns.

“We know life gets busy so why entrap yourself in the mundane routine of grocery shopping? We want to simplify your routine so you can spend time focusing on what matters most to you," Maria says. 

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