East End Foods to install vertical hydroponic growing system

Hydroponic garden will be installed at Aston Cross site

East End Foods is striding ahead with plans to open an urban farm attraction that will teach the public how to grow their own chemical-free vegetables.

Last September, The Grocer broke the news the wholesaler planned to install a vertical hydroponic system at its new flagship Aston Cross depot (‘Are hydroponics the future?,’ 29 September 2012). This week, East End Foods revealed it intended to open the facility in the new year and was in talks with an overseas specialist to construct the system.

The structure will be installed in an atrium flooded with natural light to aid the development of leafy veg in 20 days.

A tour guide will show visitors around the former HP Sauce site and tell them how the technology uses mineral nutrient solutions in water to grow the leafy veg.

It will include a talk on how attitudes to food have changed and the connection with obesity and end with chefs demonstrating ways to cook veg with Mediterranean, Indian and Italian influences.

East End Foods director Tony Deep Wouhra warned that carbon emissions were “damaging the world” and said he hoped the project would raise awareness of the importance of growing and consuming local food.

“Carbon emissions have to be reduced,” he said. “We feel urban people can grow these foods in their apartment. They will have the chance to buy the nutrition mix, seeds and vertical growing frame from here, and produce [veg] with no chemicals.”