In the race to offer the highest-quality produce, you’ll see words like “natural” and “organic” on food packaging. Those words imply that the food is better for you and the environment. But to really find better taste, healthier greens, and a more sustainable environment, the word you’re looking for is “hydroponic”. And lef’s own Bob LaDue has spent over twenty years developing and consulting on these systems. There are many reasons why hydroponically-grown produce is the best, but it’s easiest to boil them down to these three.
Hydroponic growing uses water and fertilizer like other growing methods. But the water and nutrients get recycled, allowing us to target plant needs at specific points of development, and getting healthy and vigorous greens in the end. So we use 90% less water, and absolutely zero pesticides. Other methods result in fertilizer leaching and run off into the surrounding earth. If that sounds bad, it’s because it is. Leaching contaminates ground water, surface water, and creates algae blooms – yes, yuck. So hydroponically grown greens aren’t just tasty, they’re efficient and they’re better for mother earth.
Our hydroponic growing process is 100% automated. The very first human hands that ever touch your greens are your own. This reduces the chances of contamination (not to mention bruising) that can occur with other growing methods. And because hydroponics is a closed growing process, there’s no need to rinse the greens, and there is no chance of external contamination from wildlife, people, the ground, rain, elements etc.
Consistent High Quality Product Year Round in the Northeast:
Ever try to grow plants outdoors in New England in January? All the organic methods in the world won’t make that happen. But hydroponic growing is all indoors, so the greens we produce in the winter are just as fresh and delicious as the ones we grow in June. Year-round consistency means efficiency, consistent quality throughout all batches, and shorter crop times. So we’re talking more produce per square foot and crops that can outgrow pest populations. Plus, as farmland gets gobbled up for development, hydroponic systems allow us to capitalize on land that is not farmable.
Did you know that more than 95% of the greens most people eat come all the way from California, Arizona and Mexico? That’s not exactly nearby, nor is it a recipe for freshness. Even many so-called “local” greens are really West Coast-grown — they just get new packaging slapped on at an East Coast repacking operation. After they’ve taken a long ride in the back of a shipping truck.
We think greens need to be grown where they’ll be eaten, so they hit your plate at the peak of freshness. That’s why all lēf greens are hydroponically grown right here in the heart of New England. They’ll get to you within 24 quick hours of being harvested. And they’ll change your perception of just how fresh, healthy and flavorful local greens can actually be.