Millions of Americans don’t have access to healthy fruits and vegetables or can’t afford them. The lack of availability results in increased health issues and higher healthcare costs. Enter AppHarvest, an ag-tech company on a mission to do good by transforming the food industry.
Currently, the United States imports about 32% of its vegetables and 55% of its fruit from Mexico and other countries. In addition to safety risks from lax oversight, the food must be transported long distances, which reduces quality, and increases costs and fossil fuel emissions.
AppHarvest, a public benefit company that puts doing good over profit, wants to make fresh produce available, affordable, fresh, and safer. To achieve that goal, they built massive indoor greenhouses in Kentucky to grow fruits and vegetables. The greenhouses are conveniently located within a day’s driving distance of 70% of the country.
In addition to increasing access to healthy food, protecting the environment is high on their priority list. AppHarvest uses recycled rainwater from the rain-heavy Appalachian Mountains, which eliminates harmful agriculture runoff. The company also uses sustainable lighting and tech-based efficient growing techniques that maximize yields and don’t use pesticides. This inspiring video provides insight into the scale of this project. Here’s how it works.
The AppHarvest team is loaded with talented people. Their Board of Directors includes Martha Stewart and Impossible Foods CFO David Lee. COO Marcella Butler previously worked as the Chief People Officer at Impossible Foods, and Chief Sustainability Officer Jackie Roberts previously served as the Senior Director for the Environmental Defense Fund. Their experience and passion will serve the company well.
Novus Capital, a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), is the current holding company for AppHarvest. If you’re interested in investing in this ESG company, Novus is publicly traded on the stock market under the ticker symbol NOVS. After it completes its reverse merger with AppHarvest in 2021, shares in NOVS will convert to AppHarvest shares under a new ticker symbol. Investors are encouraged to conduct proper due diligence before purchasing shares. In addition to growing delicious fruits and vegetables, AppHarvest produces high-quality jobs at their Kentucky locations.
Update: The day after I published this article, Impossible Foods CFO David Lee accepted a job as AppHarvest’s president. The stock soared 21% on the news. The future looks bright for AppHarvest.