Seed World

Siemens and 80 Acres Join Forces to Scale Vertical Farming

Siemens recently announced a collaboration with indoor farming industry leaders 80 Acres Farms, according to a release.

80 Acres Farms possesses five production farms throughout southwestern Ohio, a new farm located in Florence, Ky., R&D facilities in Arkansas and the Netherlands and a future farm in Covington, Ga. The company specializes in utilizing eco-friendly indoor farms to grow the next generation of food.

Anchored by an initial investment from Siemens Financial Services, Siemens and 80 Acres Farms will focus on applying innovative technology amongst the agriculture industry to foster sustainable, healthy, traceable and efficient farming practices. 80 Acres Farms believes the addition of Siemen’s software and hardware solutions, intelligent facility and management systems will allow the company to reach its goal of optimizing and standardizing its operations.

“We sometimes hear that food is medicine. Vertical farming is an opportunity to turn this concept into a reality, and 80 Acres Farms’ use of technology is now modeling the path forward for this transformative approach to food production,” said Barbara Humpton, Siemens U.S. president and CEO. “In this moment of change and disruption — and in a world becoming increasingly ‘glocal’ — what I see at 80 Acres Farms represents both the purpose and the power of the industrial technologies now readily available to us: the capability to invent anywhere, then to scale our world-changing solutions everywhere.”  

With this full-scale collaboration, 80 Acres’ will allow Siemens’ the optimization, automation and authority of its farming facilities and process. Siemens will work with Infinite Acres — a subsidiary of 80 Acres — to support the industrialization and scaling of its proprietary Loop platform that includes “crop management software and algorithms, environmental controls, robotics, and automation,” shared the release.

“Infinite Acres has built the Loop platform through collaboration with best-in-class technology partners such as Priva, Ocado and Signify. Our new partnership with Siemens takes our collaboration and technology platform to a new level through the 360¬∞ approach across software and connected hardware solutions — from digital twins to advanced controls,” said Tisha Livingston, co-founder of 80 Acres Farms and CEO of Infinite Acres.

Siemens Smart Infrastructure provides power distribution equipment in addition to the facilities’ energy and building management technologies to aid in the monitorization of fire and life safety, security and the systems for power distribution utilizing a single interface.

Siemens Digital Industries plans to install a collection of industrial automation technologies and edge devices that will help the production line. Edge devices and the human-machine interfaces will monitor and refresh the farms’ control systems. Siemens Digital Industries is actively developing a digital twin to simulate the farm, plant growth and production process to forecast plant growth when under diverse conditions and to optimize the growth and shipping of future farms.

“In just seven years, we have scaled from a single R&D facility to a high-tech modular system that we can deploy across the world. Standardizing our technology and infrastructure enables our industry-leading technology to scale worldwide rapidly and effectively. By building a network of committed global partners like Siemens, we can feed tens of millions more people in a matter of years,” concluded Mike Zelkind, co-founder and CEO of 80 Acres Farms.