Meet this Australian agtech startup that is growing food in shipping containers

What is your vision?
Primarily, we’re focussed on producing a great product. Our salads are unique, they are fresher than other produce, more delicious and combine varieties that traditional farmers would not be able to replicate. We strive for flavour, freshness and sustainability above all.
On average, our produce is in store within 16 hours of harvest. Our immediate goal is to grow to a size within our current premises such that we’re able to service all of metro-Sydney. Thereafter, we’re looking to move interstate and potentially internationally.
How is the company doing so far?
Since this time last year, Sprout Stack has nearly trebled sales to about 300kg per week.
We’ve relocated to a new premises that will accommodate our plans to scale and automate our production.
As part of our membership with the Future Food Systems CRC, we’ve partnered with the University of New South Wales, to assist our efforts to expand and automate.
We’ve also partnered with the University of Sydney to create an Australian bush tucker.
How has it been funded so far?
Sprout Stack has had the support of a patient and passionate investor that has been on board since the inception of the business. The business is at the beginning of a capital raise now, as it looks to fund the expansion and automation of its existing facilities.
How have you grown your company to what it is today?
With a lot of blood sweat and tears. Most importantly it’s been a matter of hiring the right people and stepping back to let them do what they do best. For all of us it’s absolutely a labour of love.
It’s also been a case of deliberately and consciously acting as a valuable member of the community – we work hard to be good neighbours and want to make a positive contribution to our local community. That means dedicating a portion of our harvest to local retail partners.
We also hire employees and contractors from the local community wherever possible and have partnered with Nova Employment to provide employment to those from disadvantaged communities.
What has been your biggest challenge so far in business and how did you overcome it?
Sprout Stack is in the vanguard of the category, meaning that there’s no roadmap or blueprint for us to follow. We’ve had to cut our own path and have had to follow our instinct a lot of the time. 90% of the time experience and instinct gives us the right answer, but that 10% failure rate is costly, frustrating and exhausting!

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