Whole Foods Market is a company driven by values, and proudly states on the company website that they have “always celebrated the difference natural and organic products can make in the quality of one’s life. That is why we set high standards for the products we sell, and the simple goal of selling the highest quality products we possibly can.” Whole Foods if also firmly committed to the locavore movement, which helps them to maintain these high standards. In August 2013, a new Whole Foods Market opened in Lynnfield, MA, and alongside Green City Growers this new location is working to out-local local production.
The System We Created
Sitting atop this 45,000 square foot store is a 17,000 square foot rooftop farm that produces more than 5,000 pounds of organically grown produce annually. The roof was designed and constructed by Recover Green Roofs, LLC, and is maintained by the staff at Green City Growers. In 2015, a passive solar high tunnel was installed, allowing the roof to produce vegetables year-round.
Where Does the Food Go?
Just twenty-five feet below the rooftop farm, produce is sold directly to shoppers. Whole Foods Market Lynnfield is the first major grocery chain to offer its customers “rooftop produce”, with selections ranging from basil and sage to tomatoes and kale. Most of the vegetables are sold as-is, with any blemished produce cooked into prepared foods. Produce sold in the store is priced about the same as their non-rooftop counterparts. That’s not just local. That’s hyper local.